Saw the psychiatrist today, at the urging of my primary care doctor. She didn’t feel at all qualified to handle the issues brought about by my “Fun with Cymbalta“. So off to see a psychiatrist I went. This was the first time I ever saw one as a patient. I’ve been an involved party before, but never a patient. So it was very much a new experience for me.
The good news: I like the doctor, and the nurse practitioner who does the intake interview. I don’t know if she will be point for future contacts, but I suspect she will. He didn’t put me on an anti-depressant, which I will take as good news, given recent experience.
The bad news: He thinks there is a good chance that what I suffered was a medicine induced bi-polar episode. I have a family history of bi-polar – mother I can confirm. Dad’s multiple marriages and abusive treatment of me and mom got him labeled as “probable bi-polar”, and interestingly enough, a dry alcoholic.
My cousin has been after me forever to join Al-Anon because of alcohol abuse in both our families. She believes that our grandfather had an alcohol problem, though I never saw it. I know my mother drank too much. As so many bipolars do, she was self-medicating. My father never drank, that I saw, but I didn’t see that much of him.
The worse news: Yes, there is worse news. After my initial visit, and based on the very abridged version of my life over the two years September 2008 to August 2010, I’ve been tentatively diagnosed as suffering from Complex PTSD. When I mentioned that Barbara suffered from that, his response was something along the lines of: “I wouldn’t be surprised if you had it [Complex PTSD] yourself.”
The treatment plan: For now, he doubled my dosage of Neurontin to help with the fibromyalgia. We discussed Savella as a possible future option, if the Neurontin doesn’t do enough. I’m going to have to get a lot worse before I consider another SNRI. Even one that supposedly doesn’t cross the blood-brain barrier, as the doctor characterized Savella.
Take note. I am being treated for fibromyalgia, not depression. As a matter of fact, he expressly suggested that the anti-depressant likely did cause my most recent problems. Am I happy about the suggestion that I may be very mildly bi-polar, with medicines causing it to go out of control? NO, I am not. But at least I have an idea of what happened, and why, and as far as I am concerned, a plan of action.
- No anti-depressants for me.
- Manage the fibro pain as appropriate.
- See him again in one month.
- Call earlier if necessary.
Yeah, I can work with that.