Saturday, February 14, 2009

Proactive, Perphenazine, Pancakes, Pasta, Pringles, POTS, Paranormal State, Proofreading

This Post was brought to you by the letter "P."

I saw a Proactive commercial that announced that you could "enjoy" free shipping on your order. I swear, the deterioration of the English language is getting worse and worse every day. Pet Peeve. You can enjoy a cup of hot chocolate. You can enjoy a good movie. You can enjoy a sunny day. You don't "enjoy" free shipping. How ridiculous. Perhaps marketers have researched and surveyed the idea that words like "enjoy" provoke positive emotions in potential consumers towards their product, but couldn't they have come up with something that makes sense? Enjoy free shipping?

At my last visit, my psychiatrist wanted to switch me from Seroquel (an atypical anti-psychotic for those of you who don't know) to Perphenazine, a traditional anti-psychotic, brand name Trilafon. Seroquel (and other atypicals) have a higher incidence of weight gain and diabetes - I'd gained 8.5 pounds in 3 weeks' time per last visit; Dr. Pyschiatrist weighs me every so often. However, Trilafon (and other traditionals) carry a heavier risk of two other conditions, one of which is potentially fatal (Neuroleptic Malignant Syndrome), the other resembles Parkinson's and isn't fun either (tardive dyskinesia).

So, in between the two, I think I would rather opt to continue Seroquel and just grit my teeth and try to stay off the sweets. It makes you crave carbohydrates - breads, sugar - hence the diabetes risk. I wake up every morning craving Pancakes and waffles. About an hour after taking my dose in the evening, I crave Little Debbie snack cakes, Pasta, bagels. A few nights ago I ate an entire can of sour cream Pringles.

In any case, before I ultimately got freaked out about taking the Perphenazine, I was decreasing my dosages of Seroquel in preparation to make the switch. Instead of switching though, one night I decided to take the Ambien that Dr. Psychiatrist had given me instead of either the Seroquel or the Perphenazine, hoping that perhaps since the Lamictal was working so well, I could say good-bye to anti-psychotics altogether, avoiding any and all side effects completely. I am not, after all, psychotic (nor have I ever been), or even full blown manic. I struggle with anxiety and insomnia. I don't know that an anti-psychotic is really the best way to treat those. Right now, I am sleeping around ten to twelve hours if not more. Getting up is difficult in the morning (11 am is still technically morning); the Seroquel hang over is stupefying, in both senses of the word. I've noticed, also, that I often can't recall simple words and that I will think one word but type another - not sure if that's a Seroquel problem or not.

The Ambien experiment was highly unsuccessful. Dr. Psychiatrist prescribed 5mg and I took it. I stayed up - as in awake - all night. All. night. Not one "wink" of sleep. I would definitly need a higher dose. I have such a hard time getting to sleep at night. Dr. Psychiatrist would have to be willing to prescribe at a higher dose and for it to be taken on a consistent basis - every night, unless some miracle happens and I am able to get to sleep on my own, which has only happened a couple, maybe a few times in several years.

I would also need to find some way to deal with the anxiety; I think I need some sort of medicinal support for that, though I fear the potential for increased tolerance over time and risk of addiction that comes with the benzodiazepine class of anti-anxiety drugs.

Unfortunately it has been proven that I apparently cannot take anti-depressants (see previous post) due to the walking-in-circles whirling dervish phenomenon that occurs - Lexapro, Paxil, Prozac - all the same thing.

Anyway, after the Ambien Atrocity the night before last, after not sleeping for over 24 hours and feeling like utter shit the next day, I went back to the Seroquel and slept. For a long, long time. I didn't get up until around 2 pm.

Something better's gotta get figured out.

I'm happy, though, not to be trapped in the clutches of the terrible, horrific depression that I was in during the previous few months. I think I have the anti-depressant properties of Lamictal, at least in part, to thank for that. Or the placebo affect. Or something.

As for the POTS, my cardiologist added a prescription for Florinef at the last visit, which is a steroid that is supposed to help me retain liquid and salt. I am on so much medicine right now. He prescribed the maximum dose, much higher than many people are taking over at the forum, so I am concerned about that. Also it has a potential to decrease potassium, which can be serious. And you know me (or don't); I'm nervous about drugs. I think twice (or three times) about taking even an Advil.

I enjoy the tv show Paranormal State on A&E. Now there's something else you can enjoy - television shows. Pay attention, Proactive. I particularly enjoy one of the mediums that makes an appearance from time to time, Chip Coffey. Someone somewhere on the internets called him "sassy." Ha. He reminds me of my friend Raekan - a Southern, exceedingly gay friend of mine. Mr. Coffey sets off my gaydar alarm bells - I did a Google search, but I haven't been able to find whether or not he has "come out" or officially acknowledged whether or not he is gay. I found something about him appearing on a gay radio show on Sirius. In any case, he reminds me so much of my friend.

I love it when I see gay people on television (I see gay people!) because there are so few, especially with limited cable (no LOGO, no Showtime for The L Word). I'm starved for it. To boot, the other day I saw a broadcast of an incredibly homophobic, hour-long presentation called "Silencing Christians" - apparently a paid programming gem - which featured a call to duty for christians to combat the "homosexual agenda." Today there was an episode of Intervention, also on A&E, presenting the story of a lesbian addict with a religious, gay-opposing family. Even though she was unfortunately an addict, I was glad to see a gay woman on tv, especially a butch woman in this case - very rare on television or any other media.

On a final note of "P" - I have difficulty Proofreading - checking for mistakes before I publish - my posts. For some reason it is easier to catch mistakes when I'm reading it already published on the blog, so I have to go back and forth from view-blog mode to editing mode in blogger, which is time consuming and aggravating.

1 comment:

Amanda said...

That seroquel made me feel so awful, and i gained 3 lbs in the four days that I took it. That's ridiculous. And I don't think I was eating a lot, either! I hadn't gotten past the sleep-all-the-time first side effects. I'm so glad I quit it.

And I think Pringles are of the devil. I think a lot of weight gain happens because of them. I wouldn't be surprised if your whole 8.5 lbs did. For some reason, Pringles are expontially more fattening than their calories claim to be. I ate one whole can of the 1/3rd less fat regular kind back in April of '03. It was the only thing out of the ordinary I ate that month, and i did it over two days or maybe just one. In those first three weeks of April, however, I gained 20 lbs for no reason, and I swear it was the pringles that did it. Thankfully, they no longer make those 1/3rd less fat kind, and they were the only kind I liked, so maybe I'm safe now. I wouldn't be surprised if every one of my huge jumps in weight are because of Pringles. The doctors should look into that.