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Diagnosed with bipolar disease. On medication. Shall I switch to another drug which will show better results?

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General & Family Physician
Practicing since : 2009
Answered : 983 Questions
Hello doctor.
I am 24,female. I had been diagnosed with bipolar2 3years back. I was regular with the doctor for almost two years, in which my Oxetol dosage started as 150g thrice a day along with Qutipin50 daily and another anti-deressant. Few months later he changed it to 300mg and then for a long time I was using 600mg in the day and 300 in the night with Qutipin25(for more than 1yr) . Why this pattern? I am supposed to be getting better with time if the meds are working. But that is not happening either. I am lazy, I stopped regular job two years ago. I have put on hell lot of weight and my body is completely misshaped. Since 1 yr i have tried visiting another doctor, but gov hospitals are a very tedious work and i no longer have funds for a private doc. Suspecting that the med is not working, I am trying to gradually reduce dosage from six months. I now take 300mg twice a day, no Qutipin as it makes me drowsy throughout the day. Is it alright?or Shall I switch to another drug which will show better results? or Do you think its best to consult a doc regularly first and then decide? I am in Delhi. Which gov facility should i go to? Is VIMHANS any good?
Posted Thu, 23 Aug 2012 in Bipolar Disorder
Answered by Dr. Aparna Kohli 1 hour later
Thanks for writing in.
Let me try and address all your concerns.
First thing is that you should not be switching the doses of the drugs that you are taking on your own. This is an extremely specialized branch and proper treatment can actually change your life for good. Once we arrive at a proper dosage for you, you could be ok for the rest of your life just visiting a doctor once in 2 months or3 months.
As far as the drowsiness and weight gain is concerned, quetiapine is known to cause both these side effects.
You would definitely need either quetiapine or another anti-psychotic.
Treatment for bipolar II disorder should comprise olanzapine, fluoxetine, and quetiapine. In addition, you would need psychotherapy as well. VIMHANS and AIIMS have excellent psychiatry departments. Please see a physician there.
Let me know if you need any more help.
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