• Welcome! It’s great to see you. Our forum members are people, maybe like yourself, who experience mental health difficulties or who have had them at some point in their life.

    If you'd like to talk with people who know what it's like

Depakote (Sodium Valproate) experiences

HLon99

HLon99

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 15, 2020
Messages
323
Location
London, UK
Dear Forum,

I'm currently on 2.5mg of Aripiprazole (abilify) and 200mg of Lamotrigine (Lamictal) for Bipolar. I am also on 30mg of Lisdexamfetamine (Vyvanse/Elvanse) for ADHD. However, I have found that my antipsychotic is blocking some of the effects of the ADHD medication so I'm looking to switch it up.

I have done some research about treating comorbid Bipolar and ADHD and the only combination of drugs that have been proven effective is Amphetamine and Depakote. Lithium and Antipsychotics have been shown to block stimulants. So I am considering speaking with my psychiatrist about switching me to Depakote.

I do have some concerns. I haven't been able to find a lot of reviews/first hand experiences about the drug, but from what I have heard it tends to be pretty negative. I've read that it can cause sedation and weight gain, which is a problem for me considering I do struggle with my weight and I need to stay alert and awake. But perhaps the Lisdexamfetamine can counteract this?

Any experiences shared/advice would be greatly appreciated.

-H

P.S. How does Valproate interact with alcohol? Can you drink on it (in moderation obviously)?
 
Zero One

Zero One

Well-known member
Joined
May 19, 2020
Messages
2,963
Location
United States
Hello another fattie in the house 😋. I am on depakote my doctor prescribed it to help stop my reflex actions when stimulated.
 
K

keith74

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 14, 2020
Messages
147
Location
Canada
My wife has been on Depakote/Epival for much of her adult life. For her, it worked relatively well with minimum noticable side effects. She didn't experience much issues with weight gain and sedation, though it should be noted that her dosage amount has typically been on the lower end of the therapeutic range (500-1000mg). She felt much more sedation with Seroquel (Quetiapine) and Olanzapine, and Olanzapine also made her gain some weight (made her hungry). She does feel Epival made her hair curvy/wavy when it should be naturally straight and suspects it promotes hair loss (though she still has a lot of hair). My wife's main issue with Epival is the long term impact on the liver.

As for interaction with alcohol... my wife hardly drinks so we don't know
 
HLon99

HLon99

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 15, 2020
Messages
323
Location
London, UK
Hello another fattie in the house 😋. I am on depakote my doctor prescribed it to help stop my reflex actions when stimulated.
Thanks for the response. Any side effects worth mentioning? I heard horror stories about it turning people into zombies and causing weight gain. Does it help with psychotic symptoms such as Paranoia? Any interactions with alcohol?
 
On Fire

On Fire

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 21, 2011
Messages
534
Location
London
I was on it for some months. I got weight gain and it did not work for my paranoia.
I did not try drinking alcohol.
 
HLon99

HLon99

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 15, 2020
Messages
323
Location
London, UK
My wife has been on Depakote/Epival for much of her adult life. For her, it worked relatively well with minimum noticable side effects. She didn't experience much issues with weight gain and sedation, though it should be noted that her dosage amount has typically been on the lower end of the therapeutic range (500-1000mg). She felt much more sedation with Seroquel (Quetiapine) and Olanzapine, and Olanzapine also made her gain some weight (made her hungry). She does feel Epival made her hair curvy/wavy when it should be naturally straight and suspects it promotes hair loss (though she still has a lot of hair). My wife's main issue with Epival is the long term impact on the liver.

As for interaction with alcohol... my wife hardly drinks so we don't know
Thank you for your response. Very encouraging to hear a positive experience. I will prob only need a lower dose, as I am predominantly depressive type. I have fairly thick hair anyway so hopefully that shouldn't be an issue. How does it compare to antipsychotics, is it as helpful for the mania?
 
HLon99

HLon99

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 15, 2020
Messages
323
Location
London, UK
I was on it for some months. I got weight gain and it did not work for my paranoia.
I did not try drinking alcohol.
Thank you. Did you experience a sedative/'zombification' effect? Which medications are you on right now? What helps with paranoia?
 
HLon99

HLon99

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 15, 2020
Messages
323
Location
London, UK
P.P.S. It would also be helpful to know how it compares to Antipsychotics (as that is what I am currently taking). Is it as effective at preventing mania and does it help with psychotic features such as paranoia or hyperarousal/anxiety.

Also, the only other drug I am considering is Lithium. I would like to know how it compares to Valproate in terms of side effects, effectiveness at preventing mania, does it help with psychotic/paranoia/hyperarousal effects?
 
On Fire

On Fire

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 21, 2011
Messages
534
Location
London
Thank you. Did you experience a sedative/'zombification' effect? Which medications are you on right now? What helps with paranoia?
Yes, it is a sort of weird zombie effect where I could not think clearly.
I am now on Aripiprazole (Abilify) 15mg/day which is excellent, minimal side effects and very effective, and has got rid of my paranoia, voices, and balanced my mood. It was thought I had bipolar or schizoaffective disorder, but now I am on a schizophrenia diagnosis. I just take the Aripiprazole antipsychotic, nothing else, no mood stabilizer.
 
On Fire

On Fire

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 21, 2011
Messages
534
Location
London
If you are only taking 2.5mg Aripiprazole, I can't see how that would actually do anything. I thought the lowest pill dosage was 5mg, but more normally it is 10mg or 15mg.
 
HLon99

HLon99

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 15, 2020
Messages
323
Location
London, UK
Yes, it is a sort of weird zombie effect where I could not think clearly.
I am now on Aripiprazole (Abilify) 15mg/day which is excellent, minimal side effects and very effective, and has got rid of my paranoia, voices, and balanced my mood. It was thought I had bipolar or schizoaffective disorder, but now I am on a schizophrenia diagnosis. I just take the Aripiprazole antipsychotic, nothing else, no mood stabilizer.
Good to know. Aripiprazole is a great drug and I wish I could stay on it. It really balanced my moods and got rid of paranoia. However, it really interferes with my ADHD medication. I am also considering lithium, although that also attenuates the effect of stimulants, have you ever tried this?
 
HLon99

HLon99

Well-known member
Joined
Apr 15, 2020
Messages
323
Location
London, UK
If you are only taking 2.5mg Aripiprazole, I can't see how that would actually do anything. I thought the lowest pill dosage was 5mg, but more normally it is 10mg or 15mg.
I am predominantly depressive type, so my mania isn't that bad. My psychotic features are mild ( I haven't got full blown schizoaffective disorder, just bipolar) and respond extremely well to even the lowest dose. I was originally on 5mg but found that it blunted my emotions too much, lost interest in life completely. I'm more or less happy with my current regiment, but I really need my ADHD meds to work. Whilst I found the abilify and lamictal to stabilise my moods, it didn't really improve my quality of life, I still have no motivation, cannot concentrate feel very disorganised. I'm unemployed and cannot study. The only thing that gives me a glimmer of hope to return to my previous level of functioning is this.
 
On Fire

On Fire

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 21, 2011
Messages
534
Location
London
I agree Aripiprazole is a great drug. Are you sure you need your ADHD medication to work full strength? Just ask for an increase in the ADHD medication if Aripiprazole is taking the edge off it.
 
On Fire

On Fire

Well-known member
Joined
Sep 21, 2011
Messages
534
Location
London
I am predominantly depressive type, so my mania isn't that bad. My psychotic features are mild ( I haven't got full blown schizoaffective disorder, just bipolar) and respond extremely well to even the lowest dose. I was originally on 5mg but found that it blunted my emotions too much, lost interest in life completely. I'm more or less happy with my current regiment, but I really need my ADHD meds to work. Whilst I found the abilify and lamictal to stabilise my moods, it didn't really improve my quality of life, I still have no motivation, cannot concentrate feel very disorganised. I'm unemployed and cannot study. The only thing that gives me a glimmer of hope to return to my previous level of functioning is this.
I also have no motivation and am on benefits. I lack executive function. Doing anything is difficult.
Sometimes this is just the disease rather than the medication.
 
Thread starter Similar threads Forum Replies Date
Redd77 Bipolar Forum 1
Similar threads
Depakote ER 500
Top