Bipolar Medication List

2013 Bipolar Update

Bipolar Medication List

To someone suffering from bipolar disorder, there is nothing more crucial in the world than their bipolar medication list. Unlike other illnesses which can be handled by rest and therapy along with their medications, bipolar disorder cannot be treated by anything else except mood stabilizers and possibly added therapy. In 95% of bipolar patients, failure to take their regular medication can easily lead to serious mood swings of the mania or depressive nature. For this reason, taking their bipolar medication on a regular basis is of utmost importance to all bipolar disorder patients.

The most common types of medicines that can be found on the bipolar medication list include lamotrigine, quetiapine, valproate, lithium and a few others. Bipolar disorder does not have one singular medication recommended for all patients because various bipolar patients respond to different medications in different ways. A patient that responds positively to lithium might not be suited for valproate while another bipolar patient can be receptive to valproate but not lithium. As such, patients may need to take a variety of medications at any given time in order to keep their mood swings at bay. Of course this will always be done under a doctor's supervision.

Still, while each medicine on the bipolar medication list is picked for a different reason, each also contains specific strengths and attributes that make it attractive for patients and doctors alike. For example, lithium is a common mood stabilizer for classic bipolar symptoms. Whenever a predictable and recurring pattern of depression and mania arises, it is typically a cycle that can be handled by lithium dosages. Lithium also has the advantage of being a relatively cheap drug; hence it is almost always the first one to be tried by doctors and patients and continues to remain on most bipolar medication list because of its relative effectiveness and price.

Using this template, doctors have correlated different medications to different bipolar manifestations. For example, lamotrigine is best for deep depression episodes while quetiapine is used for cases with accompanying insomnia symptoms.

The most important facet of the bipolar medication list is that every patient must closely work with doctor and family members to determine which medicines and mood stabilizers are effective and which ones are not. There has to be a rigorous routine of vetting out every newly proposed drug and patients and family members alike must be observant in “quantifying” to some objective degree if a patient is responding positively or negatively to a specific drug.

Another complicating matter when trying to fill out a bipolar medication list is that many of the products prescribed by doctors in some countries have yet to get an FDA approval. This circles back to the fact that most medications cannot be universally considered to treat every single case. FDA regulations dictate that a significant majority must respond positively to a medication for it to be considered approved and this is obviously not the case with bipolar disorder.

While this makes everyone’s job harder, it does not necessarily mean putting together a bipolar medication list is impossible. With enough trial and observation, doctors, patients and family members alike can conscientiously agree on medications that merit strong consideration as a regular medication on a patient’s list.

Bipolar disorder is a hard-to-treat illness but it is most certainly treatable and it all starts with an excellent bipolar medication list. Once the correct medications that work best for a particular patient is found, it is then up to the patient to take these prescribed medicine as the doctor suggests.

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