I've been through the full run with medications and have gotten fed up and very anti psychiatric drugs. I recently, about 4 months ago, got the best psychiatrist in the area due to frustration and bad medication management of my previous doctor. My new doctor, in many ways, has been very helpful. He figured out the Zoloft I had been taking for 3 years was creating mental issues in itself and pulled me off it. I did feel a lot better after being off it. I also was on a lot of benzos for 3 years and he has been helping me taper off, which is going fairly successfully. In my appointment yesterday to check on my taper, he surprised me by pulling out a Lamictal starter pack. I said am I bipolar or something? He said I'm 100% sure you aren't. I asked him why and he said this is an off label use but I've had anxiety patients before who have been resistant to traditional treatments that have found success with Lamictal. My goal was to be completely off medication. However, he did make some good points about having a low frustration tolerance and poor impulse control. I said isn't that bipolar? He said you aren't bipolar again. He said the entire SSRI spectrum is not something he would ever allow me to be on again as I tend to get suicidal and self injuring on those medicines. He also said once I'm off the benzos, benzo treatment in the future is no longer an option. So I've been debating last night and today if I should really even take this medicine. He said I don't know if it will help, but it has helped some in the past. At least he's honest, but I'm tired of medicines and having crazy reactions to them. I'm also tired of benzo detox. If something weird happened with this pill I don't know if I could even cope with it at this point. Has anyone had a doctor use this approach and had success with it?
At one stage, my Neurologist prescribed me Lamictal ( Lamotrigine) 5mg.
My Psychiatrist is the one who referred me to a Neurologist, as I have been having Chronic headache.
So apart from the medications prescribed by my Psychiatrist, I am also prescribed something else by my Neurologist.
Even Lamictal 5mg, taken daily, made me having paraesthesia, and throbbing headache, so I called my Neurologist within 2 days, ( bcoz I thought the side effects was from food, or something else), and he adviced me to stop, and see him in next appointment.
Well, that is my case with Lamictal 5mg.
And I think it is a very low dose, as it comes also in 200mg tablet.
The same thing when I was switched to Tegretol ( Carbamazepine), my blood result showed I got Neutropenia ( Reduction in a component in blood that functions as an immune system).
As both medications, as far as I know, can cause serious Drug Induced Cutaneous Reaction. And this has got something to do with the Genotype HLA-B. I read the research paper about it, and found that Asians are proned to get this adverse reaction than Caucassian. But again, the research is not concluded as it is done with only small samples of subjects.
Lamotrigine is the only anticonvulsant which has an antidepressant effect.
The same with Aprazolam, it is the only Benzodiazepine that has an antidepressant effect. But again, as with chronic use of high dose for long term, it actually causes depression.
Some anticonvulsants are used as Mood Stabilizers.
Pdocs seldom prescribe Phenytoin, Vigabatrin ( potentially causes macular-kind off side effect), Tiagabine, Gabapentin, Pregabalin, Levetiracetam ( which is an L-Isomer of Racetams, called Etiracetam. While other Racetams are used as so called "Nootropic" which helps us to concentrate and retain memory better, such as Piracetam, Oxiracetam, a fat soluble- Aniracetam).
Well, I think your doctor knows you better of your current condition, and if there happens to be side effects, he is the one who will decide the substitute. I wrote the information above, as I had tried Lamotrigine, and tried to give info as far as I know.