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12/03/2011 12:50 AM

Lamictal/Abilify combo

hjs1975
hjs1975  
Posts: 8
Member

I finally saw my pdoc this past Wednesday. Unfortunately, I wasn't able to see her any sooner, because of the Holiday and other scheduling conflicts... However, during my last visit (beginning of November) she told me to increase my dose of Lamictal by 50mg each week until I noticed a difference in my mood ... When I saw her on Wednesday (I was up to 300mg of Lamictal) I told her that although I wasn't experiencing my normal, seasonal depression, I was still feeling very "blah" (unmotivated and lethargic) like I always do this time of year…

A bit more about me before I continue… I mentioned in my last post that I work a “high stress job at night”… More specifically, I work in the restaurant industry which keeps me on my feet (literally) and my on my toes (dealing with patrons and their various needs and wants)… As a whole, I love what I do for a living (I've been doing it for 18 years and for me, the pros outweigh the cons)! It's hard to describe the ups and downs of this industry, but in general it keeps me feeling like I'm an active part of society, being able to physically interacting with people each day (as opposed to working a “corporate/desk job”, which I tried and hated) … For me, there are only three major downfalls to this industry. They are dealing with the “needy patrons” who you just can't seem to please, trying to keep the peace with the late-night customers who have been cut off from alcohol and still want more!! And finally, (but most importantly), having to have this “off switch” at work (putting on that “happy face”, even when I feel at my worst), then getting home early in the AM and having to deal with my own issues… I am sure that there are other people with late-night careers (ER doctors and nurses come to mind… Lol…), who might experience similar situations. 

With that said, I'll move on to what my pdoc prescribed for me during my visit this past Wednesday. She increased my dose of Lamictal from 300mg to 400mg and added 5mg of Abilify. She said to begin the Abilify next Wednesday, as she increased the Lamictal this week and said that it's not good increase one med and start taking another in the same week… I take the Lamictal before I go to bed and since beginning the Lamictal, I've still had issues with falling asleep as my brain continues to churn after I get home from work (she is hoping that the increase in dosage will help with my nightly racing thoughts)… Once I'm finally asleep, I'll sleep for 9/10+ hours (normal for me)… And I explained to her that I'm tired (for lack of a better word) of feeling like I'm sleeping my days away and that I was really hoping that the Lamictal would help me with this issue too! Most nights I get home from work around 1/1:30am and realistically would like to fall asleep by 3/4am and be up and feeling alive by 10/11am… My pdoc prescribed the Abilify and said it should give me a “boost”?!? I Googled the Lamictal/Abilify cocktail which generated many results… None of which I related to… Hence my in-depth post!

My question is, does anyone relate to what I've described and/or been prescribed the Lamictal/Abilify combo? And if so, I'd love to hear about your experience!!  Sorry about this lengthy explanation of my situation and the meds that I have been prescribed, but I figure the more I share, the better the response! Thank you for taking the time to read this post! 

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12/03/2011 05:43 AM
Enigma1969
Enigma1969  
Posts: 2674
VIP Member
I'm an Advocate

hjs,

I am on the same combo along with several other meds. I feel that the combo is currently working for me. I take 30mg Abilify once a day and 100mg Lamictal twice a day. Welcome to the group. I am currently unemployed, but on disability. IO noticed that when I am home all day I pace throughout the day. My p/doc said that the Abilify is making me pace, but the Lamictal should slow it down. I've been helping my parents remodel their home and do a little helping around their house, so it gives me a chance to get out, then I am fine.


12/03/2011 10:04 AM
sarahtroy
sarahtroy  
Posts: 14312
Group Leader
I'm an Advocate

Hi, I take 400 mg Lamictal and 20 Abilify with very good results. Both meds are taken at bedtime. The Abilify has really helped with my energy and motivation. However, I should add that I don't expect much out of my medications in the areas of motivation and lethargy as I consider those rather difficult areas for meds to impact and more appropriate areas for cognitive-behavioral intervention.

12/04/2011 12:22 AM
hjs1975
hjs1975  
Posts: 8
Member

Many thanks for your replies!! Wink As I mentioned in my last post, I started the increased dose of Lamictal on Wednesday night (from 300mg to 400mg). I took it right before bedtime (around 11pm that night). I felt no different then any other night that I've taken it... Then Thursday I worked late and didn't get home until about 2am... I took my dose when I went to bed (around 3am) and within an hour I started feeling VERY uncomfortable, tossing/turning in bed, feeling extremely anxious (in a panic sort of way) and I wasn't able to fall asleep until about 6am... I even tool 3mg of Adivan (1mg each hour), which didn't really help with the anxiety (maybe I need to ask my pdoc for a different drug to relieve anxiety when it occurs?)! Sad

Since Wednesday I've done alot of research online, trying to find more input regarding the Lamictal/Abilify combo (before I start the Abilify this upcoming Wenesday)... I haven't found too much information, but from what I have read, both/either drug affects people differently... So, it's tough for me to gage how the combination will affect me in the end... I did read that some people split their prescribed dose (Lamictal specifically)... Therefore, the past 2 days I've been taking 200mg when I wake up and 200mg before bed, which has eliminated the anxiety I felt the other night! Smile

Sarahtroy, you mention that the Abilify helped you with your energy... I might have poorly used the word "motivation" to describe the energy that I continuously lack during the day... In other words, I want 8/9hrs of sleep to be sufficient and to finally wake up energized and ready to participate in activities during daylight hours (as opposed to feeling like a secluded night-owl due to my profession)!! Lol!! Smile

Once again, I'm sorry about the long post! I tend to be "stream of thought" when it comes to writing... I hope that there are individuals who relate to my situation and I welcome any thoughts/suggestions regarding my situation! Smile

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