Posted by Caleb462 on February 1, 2003, at 22:17:33
In reply to QUESTIONS ON DOPAMINERGICS AND OTHER MEDS , posted by LAURA777 on February 1, 2003, at 17:40:25
> but no meds that work on the dopamine .. except the stimulants . also why are there no meds that work on the endorphins ?? why are dopamine and endorphine products such taboo ???
The reason drugs that work on the dopamine and/or opiod systems are not as plentiful is because these drugs are sometimes, but not always, "abusable." The most popular, and most addictive drugs in the world are dopaminerics - alcohol, cocaine, methamphetamine, nicotine, etc.
Anyway... there *are* anti-depressant drugs that work on dopamine. Most of them are stimulating, because that is the nature of the dopamine chemical.
You said you are taking Wellbutrin, Wellbutrin inhibits the reuptake of dopamine. It is a relatively weak drug, however, so that may be why you haven't had any success. You might need a higher dose. There are others too... Effexor, at the highest doses, is a dopamine reuptake inhibitor. I can't say I reccomend that at all though. Still, it's something to think about. It's also worth knowing that Zoloft, the SSRI, has weak dopaminergic activity as well.
There is also Fish Oil. As I understand it, taking Fish Oil supplements boosts dopamine levels in the brain.
Also, taking other supplements, like say L-tyrosine, can boost dopamine levels.
Stimulants CAN be used to treat depression, particularly if the depression seems to be related to low dopamine activity (anhedonia, fatigue, etc.). Maybe you should look into them.
Anti-histamines have a positive effect on dopamine function, which may be why tricyclic ADs are sometimes superior to the SSRIs. Perhaps you could try a tricylic.
Also there are the MAOIs. Nardil, Parnate, etc. These drugs can have a very strong effect on dopamine, but of course MAOIs pose the biggests risks and side effect profiles.
Anti-psychotics, suprisingly, can boost dopamine function by blocking the 5-HT2c receptor. Low doses only.
The herbal anti-depressant, St. John's Wort, is a mild dopaminergic.
As for improving your opiod/endorphin system - well, do you exercise?? Try that! As far as boosting opiod levels chemically, you don't have many options, but there IS d-phenylalaine and DL-phenylalaine. These prevent the descruction of the endorphins.