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Why are doctors not talking about this?

Old 01-18-2018, 03:46 PM
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Question Why are doctors not talking about this?

This is my story. Approx 20 years ago I developed clinical depression probably bipolar. The change in my brain chemistry triggered immediate overnight alcoholism. These were my symptoms.

1 my off switch blew up. 1 drink would trigger mega cravings for more.

2 I became a messy fighting drunk. I used to be a peaceful drunk.

3 I had horrendous blackouts.

4 I had horrendous hangovers

Nothing worked for 20 years.

Last year I visited a new p doc.

She prescribed me lamictal 150 mg. It wiped out a layer of depression but there was no change to my drinking patterns.

She prescribed me abilify injections and my 4 alcohol problems disappeared in a puff of smoke.

She prescribed me sertraline for residual depression and anxiety and I knew I was home and dry.

I have searched the net and i have found other people who had the same experience with abilify but there is nothing from the medical profession.

Why is abilify helping us? Some people think it is because it changes our dopamine. Why are the medical profession not shouting about it? Why are more alcoholics especially bipolar alcoholics not asking for it?

I am very puzzled. Obviously delighted but very puzzled.
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Old 01-18-2018, 11:55 PM
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Interesting personal experience. Just to clarify, when you say ablify fixed your four alcohol problems, the first one being that you didn't have an off switch, are you saying that you have an off switch now?
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Old 01-19-2018, 12:37 AM
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Yes It fixed it in a few weeks. The doc did not give me the drug for that reason but it was one hell of a side effect!!!! I dont know why it did that but I worship that drug for what should be obvious reasons. I am beginning to think that I had some weird dopamine problem and Abilify maintena was the magic bullet.
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Old 01-19-2018, 01:13 AM
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Yes, of course, it wouldn't necessarily work for everyone.

I'd be interested in how you experience your off switch. Does it act to stop you drinking or to moderate your drinking? I'm not asking because I want to try it btw, I'm just interested in other people's personal accounts.
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Old 01-19-2018, 01:44 AM
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Just read the comment by Dee on your other thread. Could you please check with him before we continue with this discussion.
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Old 01-19-2018, 01:46 AM
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Before I developed clinical depression/bipolar I was in the driving seat. If I wanted one drink I had one drink. If I wanted 4 I had 4. It was no big deal. I thought it would always be that way.

How wrong I was!!

My illness smashed my control button and it stayed smashed for 20 years. I used to roam the streets at night searching for more alcohol because I could not stop drinking when I started. When I say could not I really mean could not. One drink would turn me into an insane raging alkie.

The Abilify maintena injections put me back in control again but they also killed my alcohol buzz so there is no point drinking now. I might as well drink tea instead.

The dual diagnosis literature does not mention this. It keeps talking about self medication but I didnt self medicate. I became an overnight alkie as soon as i developed clinical depression/bipolar. I didnt have time to self medicate. It happened in a flash. Yes your brain chemistry really can change that quickly which is why alcohol is so dangerous. The docs dont mention this type of flash alcoholism when they are recommending 14 units of alcohol a week. Now the public thinks you have to be a heavy drinker to become an alcoholic. It is not true. Your brain chemistry can change in seconds and no one knows that better than me. I dont think the docs have a clue about alcoholism.
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Old 01-19-2018, 01:58 AM
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Why do we have to c heck with Dee? Is there a problem?
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Old 01-19-2018, 02:20 AM
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ps I am not saying that this or any drug would help everyone because we re all unique. Im just reaching out to people who may have similar brain chemistry to me.
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Old 01-19-2018, 02:32 AM
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Alerics giving me a bit more grandeur than I actually have

I asked about research because its against our rules to use this community for research, surveys, or school projects.

I accept you're looking for private use/curiosity.

This site is abstinence based though and most of the replies you'll get will reflect that.

I work with newcomers on that forum mostly and I don't think this discussion would be appropriate there - but this is not my forum and I won't pre empt the sitting mods here on what they might deem appropriate in this forum...very different audience.

Hope that clears a few things up,

Dee
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Old 01-19-2018, 05:17 AM
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ok thanks. No I am just curious. It was a bit of a shock to be bounced out of alcoholism after 20 years and I wanted to reach out to other people who had the same experience.

PS I am anti alcohol because it turned on me with no warning at the age of 29. I wasnt even a heavy drinker.

You will never find me promoting alcohol to anyone.

I believe the docs cause alcoholism by telling people that it is safe to drink 14 units of alcohol a week. It is safe right up to the point depression/bipolar changes your brain chemistry. My brain chemistry changed in a few hours. It is unusual but it is my real life story. Abilify maintena changed it back again for reasons I dont understand and that fascinated me.. I have been reading about alcoholic drugs ever since. My pdoc did not have a clue what I was talking about so I am isolated.

. I just want to talk to people who have a similar story because the dual diagnoses literature does not deal with cases like mine. We are here though because I found a tiny paper trail on the internet. Most of the posts I read were very old. I hope that clears things up.
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Old 01-19-2018, 07:11 AM
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It's complicated. Most doctors, most gp's, are not trained in addiction. They have a lot of other things to stay up on. And it is also a battle among the medical field - think insurance companies. Insurance companies run the medical field in the USA. Drug companies make a lot of money from the hole shebang. The government spends a lot $$$$ on 'policy' and programs to keep the rehab industry afloat - your tax dollars at work, just as the "war on drugs" was little more than a campaign slogan. For over ten years there have been proponents of certain drugs to eradicate "alcoholism". My wife tried to 'sign me up' for one back in 2010 - I guess she knew huh. But until there is a shift in thinking, alcohol rules America, and much of the world. Don't forget, the Anheuser-Busch company and other big conglomerates, including the wine and distilled spirits industry pour a lot of money into advertising, and spend a LOT on lobbying congress. So it is not a simple matter of what is 'good' for the people. Big money rules most all of the decisions made that most of us have no clue about or say in. So yes, there are pioneers in the medical field with good intentions and good ideas on how to battle the alcohol epidemic. But they are walking the wrong way around the big wheel. Until Big Pharma figures out a way to cash in hugely on this, it will be a footnote in medical journals. And until the alcohol industry starts getting slapped around by "lawyers-r-us", they will continue to cash in on the promotion and sale of alcohol - new products are coming out monthly to sell to the drinking masses. It's astounding the "new releases" I have seen just in the past month. Alcoholics are the "red-headed step child" of society. And that remains a problem as well.
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Old 01-19-2018, 08:18 AM
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Originally Posted by sammymaguire View Post
I believe the docs cause alcoholism by telling people that it is safe to drink 14 units of alcohol a week. It is safe right up to the point depression/bipolar changes your brain chemistry....
Docs don't cause alcoholism, alcohol causes alcoholism. And remember, alcohol drives lasting changes in brain chemistry independent of other mental health issues. This is what chemical dependency (addiction) is all about, and why it can take months to a couple years for an addict to get past alcohol addiction. I'm glad you found a solution, but it doesn't sound very general since you're talking about a strong prescription anti-psychotic drug used to treat bipolar disorder and schizophrenia. For the rest of us, the solution is and always will be, stop drinking, not take drugs.
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Old 01-19-2018, 08:47 AM
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Sammy, if you post in the “Alcoholism” forum above, your posts may be read by people who take medications to deal with their cravings for alcohol.
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Old 01-19-2018, 09:01 AM
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But are you questioning whether you are/were alcoholic or saying you were but were cured by medication?
Forgive me, but I'm not really sure I understand.
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Old 01-19-2018, 09:36 AM
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Thanks for your replies. I dont think it is a solution for a lot of people but it did other cure me and i have spotted other people talking about it on other forums. There wasnt much interest in those other forums.
I am going to stop posting now but I know someday someone will have the same result. Why? You are never the only gay in the village. Somebody somewhere will have brain chemistry just like mine. Anyway I shared my story so my conscience is clear. That is what I really wanted to do.
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Old 01-19-2018, 12:36 PM
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Originally Posted by Dee74 View Post
Alerics giving me a bit more grandeur than I actually have
Sure that's not possible

I just wasn't sure if this was primarily about the OP's personal experience when I saw his other thread but clearly it was. Looks like I've missed the conversation anyway.
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Old 01-19-2018, 04:57 PM
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I didn't read everyone's responses, so perhaps this has already been said. But, I think this is why doctors aren't talking about this:

In college, I became a raging alcoholic (I hadn't quite admitted this to myself). For depression, I then went on Celexa, an antidepressant. Within a week days, my intake of alcohol had dropped at least a quarter. Even more shocking, within just a few hours of my first celexa, I remember calling my sister and reporting how it was weird I was no longer craving alcohol. ( I later learned antidepressants work right away on anxiety, although they take a while to work on depression). But, then, over the years, my alcoholism slowly grew, and grew, and grew, until it was back and worse than ever. So, I think doctors are not talking about the medication you mentioned because it is not a cure. Alcoholism is progressive, end of story. I think mental health medication may, however, slow (but not stop) that progression. I don't know, of course. I'm just talking from my personal experience.
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Old 01-19-2018, 05:41 PM
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Thanks but I am closing my own thread. I dont want to talk to anyone unless they themselves feel that abilify maintena cured them. Please do NOT post unless u tick that box.
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Old 01-20-2018, 10:05 AM
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I've known lots of people who were able to reduce or stop drinking (and other drugs) once they started on a medication that helped with their mental health symptoms. When we feel okay we don't need to self-medicate. But people should not take a medication like Abilify for alcohol alone. I'm posting this for those who maybe don't meet critieria for bipolar or a psychotic disorder who may consider trying to convince their doctors to prescribe Abilify for alcoholism: https://www.drugs.com/abilify.html
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Old 01-20-2018, 12:38 PM
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Yes I possibly have bipolar.

ps I didnt get a chance to self medicate before the 4 problems started. Look what I wrote

The dual diagnosis literature does not mention this. It keeps talking about self medication but I didnt self medicate. I became an overnight alkie as soon as i developed clinical depression/bipolar. I didnt have time to self medicate. It happened in a flash. Yes your brain chemistry really can change that quickly which is why alcohol is so dangerous. The docs dont mention this type of flash alcoholism when they are recommending 14 units of alcohol a week. Now the public thinks you have to be a heavy drinker to become an alcoholic. It is not true. Your brain chemistry can change in seconds and no one knows that better than me. I dont think the docs have a clue about alcoholism.
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