Psycho-Babble Medication | about biological treatments | Framed
This thread | Show all | Post follow-up | Start new thread | List of forums | Search | FAQ

Long-Term Dysthymia -- Please Help

Posted by HeidiK on November 9, 1999, at 18:02:48

I have been suffering from the symptoms of dysthymia for as long as I can remember (back to age 5 or so -- about 29 years). I have been in weekly individual psychotherapy for approximately 10 years but recently cut down to once a month.

For many years, I was extremely reluctant to even try drug therapy. I finally gave in only after a major depressive episode about a year ago.

At that point, I was put on Wellbutrin SR 300mg/day, increased to 400mg/day, then augmented with Prozac 10mg/day and then increased to 20mg/day.

I have very low motivation levels most of the time, virtually no sex drive and tend to eat compulsively (seldom bingeing, but almost always eating beyond satiety -- and I'm currently at more than double my ideal weight.)

The Wellbutrin helped the major depression tremendously, and I decided to stick with it in hopes of improving the underlying dysthymia. Shortly after the dose was increased to 400mg, but before Prozac was added, I was able to climax twice in one evening with my husband. This is unremarkable for many people, but in 16 years of sexual activity, I've only achieved orgasm with a partner a total of about a half-dozen times. Needless to say, I was very pleased and surprised. My husband was downright giddy for days.

Unfortunately, the benefit was short-lived. After losing my ability to even masturbate to orgasm (due, I presumed, to the Prozac), I dropped back to 10mg and then discontinued it entirely. However, the sexual benefits I attributed to the Wellbutrin did not reappear.

I've bounced around quite a bit since then -- tapering off the Wellbutrin over a period of a few weeks, staying off for about 2 months, going back on for a while, then going off cold turkey (Yeah, I know. Bad idea. But I was out of meds and intimidated about going back to the prescribing psychiatrist.) I also took a B-complex supplement and Betaine HCG for a while, hoping for some SAM-e/Methionine benefits, but didn't notice any improvement.

Now, I am off everything. I even stopped taking birth control pills about 2 weeks ago because I've noticed some increase in libido during the one week in my cycle when I don't take them, and I've also read that they can cause or at least exacerbate depression. Since my husband and I rarely have sex more than once every other month, pregnancy is not a concern.

Bottom line is, I'm back to feeling blah nearly all the time, and have a motivation level and sex drive that stay parked around zero. I want to feel better, but the more I read, the more psychopharmacology seems to be a great big juggling act -- meds, dosages, side effects, benefits -- and I am very discouraged by the length of time it often takes to see results (also, how difficult it can be to recognize the effects because they can occur so subtly and over such a long period.)

However, based on my experiences on medication (improvements in motivation, concentration and mood, lessening of compulsive eating tendencies, occasional sexual benefits), I do believe that there is more to my condition than a lack of motivation and low self-esteem and that form sort of chemical intervention is warranted.

If anyone can give me some ideas that won't make me more discouraged and frustrated than I already am, I'm all ears.

Sorry for the ramble, but I really don't know where to turn at this point. Thanks for taking the time to read.




Post a new follow-up

Your message only Include above post

Notify the administrators

They will then review this post with the posting guidelines in mind.

To contact them about something other than this post, please use this form instead.


Start a new thread

Google www
Search options and examples
[amazon] for

This thread | Show all | Post follow-up | Start new thread | FAQ
Psycho-Babble Medication | Framed

poster:HeidiK thread:14899