we switched medications and I see a change

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by agee, Feb 6, 2010.

  1. agee

    agee Guest

    for the worse. Maybe.
    I hate this. Too soon to tell if it was a bad or good switch. We need some relief from these behaviors!
    difficult child has been switched from Risperdal to Abilify. He's been on 2 mgs at night. Today we added the 2 mg. in the a.m.
    He's weepy, being obsessive about needing a quarter (he wants to buy something at the grocery store and has lost all the quarters we've given him so I'm making him earn the $, but meanwhile he won't do what I ask him to do AND is arguing with me about how many dimes and nickles make a quarter). He's being unreasonable. Completely.
    Seriously. Tired. Of. My. Life. Revolving. Around. Him.
    Am also hoping that this is just an adjustment to the medication.
  2. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    That behavior sounds a lot like how my difficult child 2 was before we put him on Depakote. He was manic/hypomanic at that point, obsessing over things, getting "stuck", argumentative, emotionally fragile, prone to nuclear meltdowns. It was very hard.

    Was your difficult child having similar problems to what you're seeing now when he was on Risperdal? What were the reasons for switching to Abilify? (Sorry that I don't remember).
  3. agee

    agee Guest

    doctors. have mentioned Depakote as next possibility. They also want him off his imipramine since he's been taking too much for too long. But they're not taking him off that until we find some stability elsewhere.
    This behavior isn't really anything new - it's just kind of amped up today and today is when we upped the Abilify. And yes, he showed this on the Risperdal and with nothing, as well.
    We switched because Risperdal didn't seem to be doing anything. We had increased it over the last month or so from .5 in the a.m. + .5 in the p.m. to 2 mg. at night and 1 mg. at a.m. and saw no change. So they suggested switching atypical antipsychotics.
    This is just wearing us down. For the past 4 years it's been try this - try that - try this - try that - and no real results.
    But maybe this is it and we need to give it time. Or maybe we'll be on to Depakote next...
  4. ForeverSpring

    ForeverSpring Well-Known Member

    If his big diagnosis is Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) maybe he needs Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) interventions and not medication. The boy we adopted was put on medication after medication and nothing worked. He needed interventions and is actually better off medication.

    Are you convinced that medication is the way to go? Have any helped him? Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) is autistic spectrum disorder. Many Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) kids are medication sensitive. My son is very sensitive. Everything made him worse until we said "Enough" and had him treated only for his Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD)-not otherwise specified. His is now doing really well.

    Good luck, whatever you decide.
  5. agee

    agee Guest

    About the Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) diagnosis: I specifically asked the doctors and they said he is not autistic. Not even on the spectrum. I get that autism is under the Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) umbrella, and I know he probably needs some therapeutic interventions, but yes, I think medications are in order - the child alternates screaming or crying or arguing or obsessing and has no mood stability whatsoever). When I asked about therapy at the dr's they said there was no point until he's stable.
    As they explained it to me Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) is an umbrella diagnosis that is descriptive and includes his hyperactivity, impulsivity, problems relating to people, and some minor Occupational Therapist (OT) problems.
    I know this doesn't jive with the way people on this board think of Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD), and I should probably take it off my signature because I think it's throwing people off. As far as I'm concerned we still have no real diagnosis and in this case Pervasive Developmental Disorder (PDD) does about as much good as ADHD in describing how he acts.
    I think, based on the medications the doctors. are suggesting, they think he's bipolar. And I know at the bottom of it all is Fetal Alcohol Effects (FAE).
  6. Farmwife

    Farmwife Member

    been there done that. Heck, still doing that. I can't put into adequate words how much I understand and empathize with that statement. OMG, how hard that is to explain to anyone who isn't blessed with a difficult child.

    medication switching is another been there done that. Such a roller coaster ride. Behaviors, appointment, medication change, hope *grrrrr* stupid hope, wait, wait, wait, less hope, bad change, back to stress and another appointment.

    I so wish I could say or do something to help ease your woes right now. I know how emotionally defeating the place you are in is. :whiteflag:

    Things do sometimes get better. All things come to pass. Even the worst behaviors have an ebb and flow. Maybe we can all pray for things to go from "just awful" to the regular ole "sorta bad". ;) Some times just "sorta bad" is such a relief at our house. It lets us catch our breath before the next "just awful".

    ...I'm thinking that wasn't helpful at all, oh bother. I'd mail you some cookies if I thought it would help. :angel3:
  7. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    Sigh. I know how you feel.
    Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS) does sound logical. There are so many similarities.
    I wish I could be of more help.
  8. pepperidge

    pepperidge New Member

    Has he ever just been on Vyvanse alone without any other medications? Just wondering, because my son at your son's age had a reaction to stimulants--made him very weepy, very obssessive) etc.

    Figuring out which medications work is the pits. But it helps to know at least whether one medication is making improvements before adding or subtracting another one.

    I'm sorry it is so hard. It took a number of years to find something that really helped my kids. But when we did, the difference is huge.
  9. crazymama30

    crazymama30 Active Member

    Abilify can be very stimulating to some, sounds like that could be the case. My difficult child did the obsessive, argueing, stuck on things too and it hoovers. I would think that maybe a mood stabilizer like Depakote, Lamictal, Tegretol etc might be in order and then see how he is and maybe add a stimulant or an ap like abilify. My difficult child takes abilify but it was added after he was mostly stable on Lamictal. I say mostly stable because he was obviously not stable on Lamictal alone or we would not have added abilify. He has never been on Abilify alone. He would however be lost without the Daytrana.

    Hope something happens for you soon, you are not in a good place with him. Hang in there.
  10. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    Well, agee, I forgot to mention that prior to my son's behavior that was similar to yours, he had already tried Risperdal for several years and we'd moved onto Abilify and he was only on that medication and a stimulant when the bipolar symptoms emerged (the Abilify did not cause the bipolar... his was brought on by an autoimmune response to an infection that affected his brain... long story) but my point is that Abilify alone did nothing to help those specific symptoms of obsessiveness, stuck thinking, rages, emotional lability, etc. He was also having pressured speech and racing thoughts. The stimulants definitely made things worse in his particular case. And it wasn't until we got him on Depakote and added a different AP (because during all this excitement he developed a dystonic reaction to Abilify, Risperdal AND Zyprexa -- yeah, we went down the list and tried them all) that we feel like the majority of his symptoms were finally reined in.

    So if you can ignore my run-on sentence above, what I'm trying to say is that for bipolar patients it is not unusual for them to need both a mood stabilizer AND an antipsychotic to get them to a good place. And while I admit to not knowing a lick about Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (FAS), I imagine that like any brain injured person experiencing psychiatric complications, medications have their place and can be very helpful in either correcting or at least supporting a compromised system.
  11. agee

    agee Guest

    @Farmwife, just knowing someone else is in the same boat is hugely comforting. It is so hard sometimes to be around "normal" kids whose parents just don't get it. My friend came over yesterday and it was such a relief - difficult child's anxiety kicked in and he became "fake" calm and "fake" nice (I say "fake" because he was pretending, or at least trying really hard - and after they left we got what he'd been storing up). I told her it was great having her there because we'd had a hard day and she told us how her (average 6 year old) little guy was sometimes whiny.
    Anyway, I feel alone a lot and this board is helping me not feel that way.
    To answer questions - he has been only on stimulants in the past. That's how we started out. Then he was on stims + prozac, then stims + imipramine, then on risperda; + stims + imipramine, and most recently we had 6 weeks of just risperdal and imipramine. This last bought brought wild and uncontrollable behavior, good sleep, and much better mood. But complete inability to function in school.
    Just stims made him low. That's why we added the Prozac.
    Now he's back on a low dose (low for him) of Vyvanse and he can do school, pretty much, but is back to being rude and low...add upping the Abilify and he's a basket case.
    But I think it's worth seeing if he'll stabilize on it. I'm trying not to overreact to first day results. Bur obviously I'm reacting. It's more this constant up and down and up and down and back and forth and not feeling like anyone will ever be able to help us is driving us crazy.
    That's all. It stinks. I hate it.