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Doctor insights on: Lithium

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Lithium (Overview)

Chemically, lithium is a light, soft, alkali metal. It's very highly reactive, so that in nature it's only found in compound form. It's useful in batteries. As a medication, Lithium Carbonate and citrate can be used to stabilize mood in people with bipolar disorder. In these people it can help with both mania and depression. Blood level monitoring is needed when taking lithium.


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What is lithium prescribed for ?

What is lithium prescribed for ?

Why Lithium: There are a number of reasons for prescribing lithium, some of which are off-label. Lithium is commonly prescribed to treat symptoms of bipolar disorder. Other reasons include assisting with anger management by decreasing explosive episodes. Another is to augment or boost the antidepressant effects from antidepressants. ...Read more

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Lithium (Overview)

Chemically, lithium is a light, soft, alkali metal. It's very highly reactive, so that in nature it's only found in compound form. It's useful in batteries. As a medication, Lithium Carbonate and citrate can be used to stabilize mood in people with bipolar disorder. In these people it can help with both mania and depression. Blood level monitoring is needed when taking lithium.


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What effect exactly does lithum have on manic depression? How does it work in the brain?

What effect exactly does lithum have on manic depression?  How does it work in the brain?

Lithium: Is a mood stabilizer, theorized to work through ion channels in nervous system (electrolyte channels) which affect transmission of neurochemicals. This is one of several theories for its action. ...Read more

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Can you please define lithium used to treat?

Can you please define lithium used to treat?

Bipolar Disorder: Lithium is typically used by physicians for long term mood stabilization in bipolar disorder. It can also be used more acutely in combination with other medications to control more acute "manic" episodes of bipolar disorder. Lithium requires blood level monitor as too high a dose can be dangerous. Thyroid and kidney tests are also needed when using lithium. ...Read more

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Please describe the medication: lithium carbonate?

Please describe the medication: lithium carbonate?

Lithium: Lithium carbonate is a medication approved to treat bipolar type 1 acute manic episodes. It is also used for as maintenance therapy to prevent future bipolar mood episodes. Its clinically efficacy is related to serum levels which require blood draws. It can cause a minor to serious side effects and is life threatening in overdose. For additional information, please refer to the fda website. ...Read more

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How could i tell when lithium starts working?

How could i tell when lithium starts working?

For BPD: thium is a medication that works in the brain to treat bipolar disorder. It is approved for the treatment of bipolar disorder and acute mania. Bipolar disorder involves episodes of depression and/or mania. A depressive episode, or depression, occurs when a person experiences several of the following symptoms at the same time: "low" or depressed mood (e.g., sad, empty, tearful), decreased interestt ...Read more

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Information about lithium for mood stabilizing?

Which information?: Lithium is the oldest and most well-studied mood stabilizing medication we have. It's mostly well tolerated when levels are carefully monitored. Still, it doesn't work as well in every case of bipolar disorder, especially with rapid cycling. Your psychiatrist will be checking ekg, kidney, and thyroid function ; lithium levels. For more info: http://tinyurl.Com/kmq5bdb. ...Read more

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Can a mood stabilizer like Depakote or lithium for bipolar disorder works only for the manic episodes?

Can a mood stabilizer like Depakote or lithium for bipolar disorder works only for the manic episodes?

Yes: In fact, we have far better treatments for mania than we do the depressed side of this illness. We are all hoping that better treatments for bipolar depression will be found. ...Read more

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Is lithium safe in pregnancy?

Is lithium safe in pregnancy?

No.: Lithium is not safe during pregnancy. For one thing, it can cause cardiac/ heart defects in the baby ( epstiens anomoly). Lithium has a narrow margin of safety ; therfore, the fluid shifts that occur during pregancy may effect lithium levels, putting both the mother and baby at risk. If a woman is on prescribed medications and becomes pregnant, she should notify her doctor immediately. ...Read more

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Can I take lithium orotate and citalopram together safely? Thanks in advance.

Can I take lithium orotate and citalopram together safely? Thanks in advance.

Depends on you: If you check the full prescribing information for the medication or medications in question, you can find the answer for just about any combination. There are also medication interaction checkers on-line. Depending on dosing, I often check an ECG if I prescribe lithium and Celexa (citalopram) in the same patient. No absolute contraindication. ...Read more

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Is drinking, potentially heavily, and taking lithium, dangerous?

Is drinking, potentially heavily, and taking lithium, dangerous?

Always a concern: Drinking heavily, regardless if on prescription medications or not, is always a concern and a dangerous endeavor. If you feel you may have a drinking problem, then i would advise you to speak with your prescribing physician about this. All the best! ...Read more

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What are symptoms of lithium toxicity?

What are symptoms  of lithium toxicity?

Lithium toxicity: Lithium can cause nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, dizziness, muscle weakness, and fatigue. Also there can be a fine tremor of the hands or legs, muscle twitches, difficulty walking, slurred speech, nystagmus, and seizures. Management is to reduce dose or temporarily stop the drug. Lithium levels need to be monitored regularly, and kept in therapeutic range (maintenance .6 - 1 mmol/l). ...Read more

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Doc wants me to start lithium for bipolar. I'm scared ofhaving a savier deadly reaction. What are the odds. I'm scared of the drug but need something?

Doc wants me to start lithium for bipolar. I'm scared ofhaving a savier deadly reaction. What are the odds. I'm scared of the drug but need something?

Very rare: I've been prescribing li for 30 years and have never seen a deadly reaction on it. Just be sure you take it as prescribed, never get dehydrated on it, have regular blood levels checked and don't any new medications or supplements without running it by your doctor first. The meds that interact the most are medications for high blood pressure, water pills, and non-tylenol non- narcotic pain reliever. ...Read more

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How lethal is lithium? How much is to much lithium at one dose?

How lethal is lithium? How much is to much lithium at one dose?

Depends on dose: Should monitor closely once you start taking level within seven to 10 days narrow therapeutic index .Toxic dose affect your heart and kidney failure. ...Read more

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What are the long-term risks of staying on Lithium versus its benefits in controlling bipolar?

What are the long-term risks of staying on Lithium versus its benefits in controlling bipolar?

Kidney function: The most important long-term effect of Lithium is its effect on kidney function. If Lithium turns out to be the most effective medication for you, it is important to monitor kidney function with lab work and urinalysis on a regular basis ...Read more

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Orthodontic spacers placed 4 days ago. Painful to chew, teeth sensitive, and pain wrapping around to front teeth now. Is this norm? What to do 4 pain?

Orthodontic spacers placed 4 days ago. Painful to chew, teeth sensitive, and pain wrapping around to front teeth now. Is this norm? What to do 4 pain?

Call orthodontist: Follow the instructions your orthodontist gave you. There is ususally some pain after spacers have been placed. Ibuprophen will help with the pain.. Soft diet until you feel better. If the pain is more than you think it should be call your orthodontist and talk with them. ...Read more

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L endoscopic hernia repair. Pmh: mild l cerebral palsy. I had l spasms coming out of anesthesia. S/p 1 mo. I have a painful large 3rd testicle?

L endoscopic hernia repair.  Pmh:  mild  l cerebral palsy.  I had l spasms coming out of anesthesia.  S/p 1 mo. I have a painful large 3rd testicle?

PostOp Seroma: It is very common for fluid to accumulate where the old hernia was immediately after surgery. It can feel just like a hernia but will not "yo-yo" in and out. Best option would be to see your surgeon in-person so they can examine you & reassure you that all is well. ...Read more

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Just recently started taking Zoloft (sertraline) 50mg and lithium 1500mg and after eat now stomach hurts very badly, don't know what to do or if should be worried?

Just recently started taking Zoloft (sertraline) 50mg and lithium 1500mg and after eat now stomach hurts very badly, don't know what to do or if should be worried?

No NSAIDs on Zoloft (sertraline) : Or lithium. The combo increases risk of stomach ulcer and raises risk of lithium toxicity. Call your psychiatrist tomorrow for further instructions. Best wishes. ...Read more

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What else could a very low lithium in blood (0.15 nmol/l) mean besides possible bipolar disorder?

What else could a very low lithium in blood (0.15 nmol/l) mean besides possible bipolar disorder?

Lithium Level: Lithium is an essential mineral nutrient. It's not often measured specifically except when someone with bipolar disorder is taking pharmaceutical lithium -- which has a strict therapeutic range. A low serum lithium does not automatically mean bipolar disorder, but has been associated with increased risk for suicide, homicide, & some cases of autism. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/11838882. ...Read more

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What are the symptoms of both low and high, lithium levels in the body?

What are the symptoms of both low and high, lithium levels in the body?

Low no help--high: Low may not be effective--high tremor diarrhea decreased coordination ataxia stupor death. ...Read more