Seem to Be Slowly Getting Better
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Q:  Seem to Be Slowly Getting Better

Dr. Phelps,
11 years ago I was diagnosed with Bipolar and immediately put on Litium, and every anti-depressisants you could think of, plus very so often I was put on klonpoin or zaxin for a short term. Why I think you should contact me is that I kept telling the doctors that I was experiencing alot of aniexty and panic attacks and no mood swings. My mood stayed the same but for the anixty and panic attacks I couldnt sleep and lost alot of job.  Finally one doctor put me on millarell to help me sleep and I ended up in the ER (my 7years on son had top call 911 in the middle of the night because I was having a reaction) I only stayed in the hospital until they got the medicine out og my system, but the doctors still didnt listen to me and kept me on the same medicines even though I couldnt sleep and I finally went on Social Security Dis. because I could not hold a job.  Finally I realized I didnt have Bipolar and stopped taking the litium and I had no mood swings.  Now I see a doctor that treats me for anxiety disorder (or you might know the medical term).  He has me on Zoloft(which I know is an antipressant but also helps with anxiety) and zanix to help with the aniexity and panic attacks (see when I ge the panic attacks they are in the middle of the night and they last 3-4 hours - the others doctors knew that gave me nothing but litium and antipress.)  With the zoloft and zanix (I have taken klonopin but zanix is cheater) I seem slowly getting better.

I read your article in the Winston-Salem North Carolina Journal and your article describes me.  I would really love to hear from you and tell you more about the last 11 years of my life.  Look at me know Im on disability at the age of 37 and I have not had an active life in years.  I feel you could help me or at least listen - no other doctors did for years until I took charge of it and finally slowly Im seeing some results.  They all said I had Bipolar and put me on Litium and antipress. and told me to learn to live with it and soon I would get better.  11 years and Im still feeling the same as I did when my husband walked out and left me with a 11 week old boy.  Oh through all these years I have raised a son.  I just want to feel normal againa not feel ashamed to let anyone into my life.  I know you said that you could answer every letter, but please try to reach me.  I think you would like to hear more.


Dear Ms. C' -- 
I'm glad to hear that you've found a combination of medications that seems to be leading toward improvement.  I hope that improvement lasts a long time.  You may be a person who does not do best when treated according to a simple label, but rather according to the symptoms you have at the time.  Since you've had plenty of antidepressants, perhaps if your symptoms begin to worsen it would be wise to consider trials of other "mood stabilizers", even if you don't have "bipolar disorder" as such.  In any case, I hope things continue to go more smoothly for you.  

Dr. Phelps


Published April, 2002


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