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Re: Marplan success stories?

Posted by Scott L. Schofield on November 16, 1999, at 8:58:32

In reply to Re: Marplan success stories?, posted by Elizabeth on November 16, 1999, at 3:18:15

>> Has anyone had success with Marplan?
How long did it take to work?

> I should be starting it "any day now." I will certainly let you know, and I know there are others here who have tried it.

>> I would be particularly interested to hear from people for whom neither Parnate nor Nardil produced and adequate response.

> I can't help you there; I responded to both. Nardil caused excessive weight gain (like, about 40%) and pooped out after 8 months or so each time I tried it; Parnate's cardiovascular effects prevented me from getting to a fully effective dose.

> Can I ask what you've tried so far? Are you on a mood stabilizer at the moment?

Unfortunately, I think the list of which drugs I haven't been on would be shorter.

I was first diagnosed as unipolar by Fred Quitkin et al. at Columbia Presbyterian / New York Psychiatric in 1982. I was enrolled in their study comparing tricyclics versus MAO-inhibitors for the treatment of atypical depression. I was a rapid-cycler at the time. It wasn't until 1992 that I was diagnosed as bipolar by the staff at the NIH. All of my manic episodes involved treatment with MAOIs. I have never experienced a spontaneous mania. I remain in a state of severe depression without respite. If it weren't for the mild improvement afforded me by Lamictal, I doubt I would be able to write this post.

It is only this past month that I requested of my doctor to give "mood-stablizers" a more central role in my treatment. Obviously, an antidepressant-centered approach has not worked. This approach seems to be the one chosen by the researchers at the NIH for treatment-resistant bipolar depression. Sometimes I get the feeling that there is a sort of mentality like "If you throw enough sh_t against the wall, some of it is bound to stick." I wish some of that sh_t would stick to me.

The only remission I experienced was while taking a combination of desipramine and Parnate. It lasted for about six months before I became hypomanic, and then manic (mixed state, I guess). After getting control of the mania with Klonepin, the doctor decided not to go back to what worked. I've been f'd ever since. At least I learned that life *can* be good.

Right now, I am taking Depakote, Lamictal, imipramine, and Marplan. I've been on Marplan for less than a week. Of course, I'm not looking for anything to happen for a few weeks yet. I think it takes about two weeks just to establish a steady-state degree of inhibition (not sure).

What dosage are you to work up to?

What were the autonomic side-effects you suffered while taking Parnate?

40% REALLY sucks.

Good Luck.

- Scott




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