Posted by: Anonymous | 2009/06/16

Questions about fluoxetine and depression

i' ve been depressed for quite a while and have been seeing a psychiatrist on and off for about 8 months. tried zoloft (made me sleep all the time and eat everything i could get hold of) and venlor (no different). things are getting worse and worse. i had an appointment on friday and got a prescription for espiride and fluoxetine. the espiride is for social anxiety, i think.

a few questions:
1. does fluoxetine have a possible side effect of weight gain? (i know that most ADs do, but if it does there is no way i' m going to get less depressed while taking it)

2. is it worth it to see a psychiatrist when you have to wait at least 3/4 weeks to get an appointment? (like now - things are at a peak of urgency and i have nothing to hold on for - but to get another appointment i would have to wait until july, probably)

3. is it worth staying with a psychiatrist who doesn' t seem to take you seriously? (eg: the doctor asked whether i hurt myself and i said yes. he didn' t ask to see where or ask how badly i hurt myself. i often feel suicidal - he knows this - and speculate about carrying it through every time i hurt myself. but the next time he would check up on me would be in a month' s time)

4. i have no idea what to do next. i was relying on that appointment to give me something to be hopeful about, but here i am, feeling like the world is closing in and suffocating me and life is a nightmare. i have huge difficulties talking to people and communicating these things within a rushed, businesslike half-hour is hard.


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Our expert says:
Expert ImageCyberShrink

Interesting. As some ADs can cause mild nausea at first, some people lose weight on them. Fluoxetine is an effecive antidepresant, and may very well suit you. I have never understood why anyone prescribes Espiride --- it seems to be some sort of fetish peculiar to South African Gps and some shrinks. It is NOT a recognized treatment for social anxiety disorder.
1) weight gain is not certain on any of the ADs, but possible on many of them. Watching one's diet and exercise still does help. SO it may no have that effect on you.
2 ) It's unfortunate, bu i seems as though many psychiatrists run a very full program, and one may need to wait for an appointment. I think they should perhaps not see people as often or for as long, on follow-up, once the treatment is clearly working, and keep more slots open for emergencies and urgencies.
3) This would bother me a lot. It is absolutely imperative that any psychiatristy inquire carefully about thoughts of self-harm, let alone any episodes of hurting oneself, and to be very sure he understands exactly what is happening. He needs to discuss his directly with you, rather than treating it more superficially, like taking the temperature. It's best to find a shrink who takes you and your sadness seriously and respectfully ; I guess the problem is finding an alternative to see without waiting a long time. Maybe let this shrink deal for the moment ( until you find someone better ) with the meds, and consider seeing a psychologist or counsellor providing CBT ( Cognitive-Behaviour Therapy ) which is also an effective treatment for Depression, and would give you more control over your progress,
4) a Half-hour is more rushed than the usual psych appointment, and a skillful shrink shouldn't make you FEEL as though you are being rushed. But do not let any of this make you more depressed --- concentrate on the fact that you have the right to be feeling a great deal better before much longer, that you DESERVE the progress which you can achieve. As Liza says, don't give up --- you're worth it

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Our users say:
Posted by: Anonymous | 2009/06/17

thanks. i just feel like i' m being too impatient/unreasonable/spoilt if i want to change doctors. but i probably will.

Reply to Anonymous
Posted by: Liza | 2009/06/17

Choosing the right psychiatrist is very important to improve your health. If a psychiatrist isn' t working for you - try someone else. In your case, you might also want to see a psychologist to chat about your problems. My psychiatrist is also my psychologist, but he is the first doctor I' ve found who takes care of both needs. Most psychiatrists don' t. Just don' t give up because one specific doctor isn' t working. Find one who does work for you.

Good Luck

Reply to Liza

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