Blargh.

Jul. 21st, 2014 08:37 am
baratron: (flasks)
I really Do Not Like how I'm feeling at the moment. It's 8.24 am and I haven't managed to sleep yet, even though I quit my game before 5 am and lay down in the almost-dark for almost an hour before giving up and reading on my phone again. I feel so desperate and frustrated, and my moods are all over the place.

The conclusion I have come to is that I've never regained the same level of mood control that I had before going on pregabalin and then gabapentin, which are both anticonvulsants which affect mood, used for relief of pain caused by neurological issues. I thought that stopping the gabapentin would be enough to make my carbamazepine go back to smoothing things out, but it's been 6 months and I still don't feel as though I'm getting adequate mood control. (Also, my back needs another set of injections, which is another story in itself.)

Right now I feel in a "glorious" mixed state of depression and hypomania, with all sorts of negative self-hatred/self-harming desires going through my mind, as well as anger and tearfulness, and too many thoughts. In some respects I feel as though I have loads of energy, except I don't really. Loads of thoughts and ideas, but no actual energy or concentration span to start writing any of them down. I keep playing Elder Scrolls Online because it's the only damned thing I can concentrate on, and it's absorbing enough that I don't have to worry about anything else while I play it. I have a horrible feeling I'm using it to self-medicate because of how shitty I feel when I'm playing and there's no one else I care about on to talk to.

I need to go and see my doctor. It's difficult to explain how bad I'm feeling when I can fake normal so well. I keep thinking "I hate my life", except I don't, really. My life is pretty awesome in so many ways. What I hate is my brain, for not managing its own neurotransmitters properly.

Don't want advice, don't want sympathy, only empathy from people who have some idea what this feels like. Stupid brains!
baratron: (flasks)
You know what makes me really fuckin' angry? People who boast that they don't take any medications that are made in a lab. As I said to one of these loons today, you have no idea how lucky you are to have the CHOICE not to take prescription drugs. I personally have the choice of taking prescription drugs or dying.

I was explaining to some people who don't know me well about the delights of chronotherapy, and why today I got up at 2 am and will remain up until at least 2 pm. And said people were trying to convince me that I should try drinking alcohol or smoking pot for my sleep problems. Because, yeah, that's a bloody great idea for someone on several medications which say not to mix it with alcohol, and who as a result of chronic fatigue syndrome has no tolerance for it at all (as in a few sips of something alcoholic puts me under the table and feeling awful). And who is extremely asthmatic and starts retching and puking when even vaguely near pot smoke.

Oh yeah, and apparently "weed won't cause variable effects with other medications". I'm on carbamazepine, which is a cytochrome P450 inducer, and that is affected by somewhere between half and two-thirds of all other medications, including natural remedies. The chemicals in pot, of which there are many, could make me need to increase or decrease the dosage of any or all of my meds. If I could find academic papers stating which particular biochemical pathways are affected by it, then I might consider it. But the fact it's illegal means there is insufficient information about drug interactions. The other problem with it being illegal is you can never be certain what dose you're getting. I prefer drugs where the dosage is known.

*stab stab stab*

In other news, I have a new wheelchair. It's a new-to-me wheelchair rather than new. It was made in 1998. However, it is built like a fricking TANK. It is higher off the ground than my old one, "for a more important appearance on the road"(*) and also very, very red. I'll link you to the eBay auction for now because I lack spoons to take my own photos. There's also more pictures in this brochure, although mine doesn't have the riser or tilt functions, not least of all because I don't need them.

(*) Engrish phrase from the Di Biasi tricycle catalogue, circa 5 years ago.
baratron: (endurance)
I haven't been writing in my journal because I've been writing (crappy) fiction instead. Apparently, I entirely lack the spoons to write coherently about my life, or to be social with friends; but I can write coherent fanfic. Go figure. I miss being extroverted whenever I flip into introversion, since it's so alien to my "normal" state, but it rarely lasts more than a few months.

Hardly anyone has apparently read my last dose of crappy fiction, so here is a link to the livejournal post that explains it. Don't worry about not being familiar with the universe, I've written it in such a way that it should be obvious who the good guys and bad guys are, and why exactly Martin spends the whole game desperately needing A Nice Cup Of Tea and A Cuddle. None of which he gets, by the way. Just more and more books.

If you're not into even vaguely erotic fiction, or if you are but are traumatised by reading it when it's been written by someone you know, or if the canon trauma and dubcon would be upsetting, then you have an excuse. I just can't believe that applies to all the people who still read my livejournal except for 3.

Still rather unwell in the head. Have been to the doctor, who suggested increasing the dose of venlafaxine very slightly, and taking a "drowsy" antidepressant to help with the sleep problems. I'm not sure if it's helping, but I do seem to have slept slightly better the past couple of days.

Rudery )
baratron: (endurance)
Blargh. Definitely having a bipolar mixed state, with manic and depressive symptoms at the same time. It's frustrating as all hell because some of the things that relieve depression are totally contraindicated for a mixed state: I can't e.g. use my lightbox, because I'm already agitated, jittery, and overstimulated. I'm going to see how it goes for a bit longer, and then go to the doctor if it doesn't improve.

Lovely symptoms for my records. )

GAHHHHH!

Mar. 17th, 2011 11:24 pm
baratron: (flasks)
Oh, I am so pissed off, I really am. Spoke to my doctor this evening, and it turns out that my vitamin D level is WAY WAY low. Ridiculously low. The bottom of the reference range for "normal" is 75 nmol/L, and mine is 14!

When I phoned up the surgery three weeks ago to ask about the results of my blood test, this was the sort of information they were supposed to give me. I had specifically asked to have my vitamin D level tested since I know it's one of the things that can cause unremitting fatigue, especially mental fatigue. And the fun thing? I take a multivitamin that supplies 100% of the RDA of vitamin D, and have it supplemented in my soy milk, and I drink a LOT of soy milk.

So I started looking this up, and found "Occasionally, drugs used to treat fits, particularly phenytoin (epanutin), can interfere with the liver's production of 25 hydroxy-vitamin D." I'm on an antiepileptic for bipolar. Checked that and found low vitamin D level is a known side-effect with carbamazepine - there are studies in actual journals on PubMed. GODS DAMN IT! What are the other symptoms that go along with low vitamin D level? Aches, pains and LEG CRAMPS!!! My legs are so stiff and sore that I can hardly walk. And according to some of the research I've seen and web sites I've read, the deficiency is so severe that over-the-counter supplements and/or more time in the sun isn't enough to help.

Well, that would be an explanation of why I'm so damned ill right now, wouldn't it? Covers all the symptoms. Hopefully, it means that I should be able to recover again fairly quickly.

But honestly, why didn't whichever doctor who looked at the results before flag up that vitamin D level as insanely low? Or why didn't the nurse I spoke to tell me about it? That's three whole weeks of treatment missed :/

drugs++

May. 28th, 2010 06:57 pm
baratron: (flasks)
In other news, I have finally managed to get a telephone appointment with a doctor, and got the correct dose of carbamazepine. I've even been to the pharmacy to pick it up.

Hoping that normal ability-to-function will be restored shortly.
baratron: (introspection)
Life is strange at the moment. Still not on the right dose of carbamazepine because I am an idiot. I called the surgery last Wednesday to ask when the earliest telephone appointment with my doctor would be, and they said 11am tomorrow... so I didn't take it because I thought I'd be capable of getting into the surgery to see any old doctor before that. Duh. What I should have done was take the telephone appointment, and then if I did manage to see someone else, cancel it. It's not as if an appointment with my impossible-to-see doctor would have gone unfilled for very long.

So my head is in a strange place, and my sex drive is ratcheting up, and my moods are really quite unstable. And my concentration span is going all over the place - sometimes good, sometimes non-existant.

I'm also thinking that I need to do some serious thinking about my various relationships. Essentially, though I never thought it would be - my PhD is like a new primary partnership. I thought it would be more like a new job - it hadn't occurred to me just how life-filling (in the sense of "expanding to more than fill the time available") it would be. Let alone the fact it's always with me, financially-entwined, and of highest priority in my life. Really, it's a lot like a relationship, which is odd considering there's only one person in it. (Well, three, if I include my supervisors, but that just feels weird). I haven't had time for proper quality time with my other partners in months, but I don't want to split up with either of them because I really care about them, but my balance of time and spoons available are all out of whack. It's confusing.

It would really help with the feeling more in control of my life if I didn't live in an absolute fecking tip. I've no idea how we're going to get the house sorted out when I'm too tired during the week to do housework, and Richard keeps going away at the weekends for paintball events. What we need is to get it tidied up enough that we can get a cleaner. But we have too much random crap, and too much stuff that is actually quite important but looks like crap.

I'd quite like to play my bass guitar sometime, and go out to see bands, and have time to read books for pleasure, and fit in extra research that is non-essential but useful background reading. And I don't know how I can get it all in because going up to college three days a week eats too many of my spoons.

Don't actually want advice, by the way. This is more of an "everything is confusing and in flux" post than a "help, I don't know what to do" post. I am wondering just how much better my spoon levels will get when I finally get my Mac and can work from home instead of having to keep physically going to college. Might be that's all I need? :S

PSA

May. 15th, 2010 05:46 pm
baratron: (flasks)
My brain hasn't been working properly for several days because I'm not on the right dose of my mood stabiliser. I normally take 500 mg made up of a 400 mg tablet and a 100 mg tablet, but the 100 mgs have dropped off the bottom of my repeat prescription - and I've had too many things I have to do at college to be able to see the doctor and get it sorted out.

It's amazing how much difference 100 mg makes. I am sleepy, forgetful and low-level depressed, as well as quite headachy. So in general I am useless right now.

Hoping to get a telephone appointment with my doctor sometime next week (Monday is out, the rest of the week should be okay) to get the prescription sorted out. Ugh.

Bleeding.

Mar. 18th, 2010 04:46 am
baratron: (black)
Today I found myself having a SURPRISE PERIOD. At the age of 33, with a fairly regular menstrual cycle, I should know what the hell my body is doing at any given moment... right?

Except that I used to have, or technically still have, premenstrual dysphoric disorder. I would always know when my period was due because a week to 10 days beforehand, my breasts would swell up into enormous, painful balloons; my belly would become a hard, tight drum; and my legs and back would start aching. I'd start feeling irritable, and this would get worse over the next few days until I'd go completely fucking batshit on day 23 out of 28. Psychotic thoughts, depersonalisation, and intense self-hatred. Eventually that mood would "burst", and from day 25 to 28 I'd be back to the irritable while crying uncontrollably at any minor provocation. And I would get ridiculously clumsy, to the point of non-deliberate yet dangerous self-injury.

Now I am on carbamazepine, a mood stabiliser. 500 mg. The mood changes barely happen at all - I suppose I may get a little more irritable or easily provoked or tearful, but it's nothing - a few minutes, maybe. My breasts do swell up, but not until 3 days before my period is due. I get clumsy, but only as much as I do when tired or "glandy". My back hurts and my legs feel sore, but no more than from fatigue or overuse. I don't know why the mood stabiliser should help reduce the physical symptoms as well as the emotional ones, but it seems to be a real effect. I could hypothesise that carbamazepine is also smoothing out hormone levels as well as neurotransmitters (it's known to stop many contraceptive pills working), but I don't know enough about the biochemistry to come up with a plausible mechanism. It's sorta on my "things to do when I have more time" list, along with other much-postponed items like writing FAQs for games which few other people care about.

So until I get more organised about keeping records of these things, I'll keep getting "surprise" periods. At least I have some hippy disposable sanitary towels in my desk drawer at college now.
baratron: (rainbow chemistry geek)
Do I know anyone who's a member of the Royal Institution? I'm quite interested in this talk: Quest for the holy grail of bipolar disorder: a better lithium, but it's members and their guests only. The grade of membership that gives free admittance to the Friday evening talks is £95 p.a., and the type where you have to pay £10 to attend the talks is £30 p.a. They don't apparently do a student membership, only reductions for 14-25 year olds. I am mildly grumpy about this.

There is also The great ideas of biology which sounds interesting.
baratron: (flasks)
Went to the doctor this morning. Now have the timetable for my Several Months of Living Hell, a.k.a. coming off Efexor.

It is a very well-known fact that venlafaxine Is Evil, which is why it's usually only given to people who have not responded properly to any other antidepressant. Coming off venlafaxine is "fun". So much fun that it can be really dangerous for you and others around you. In fact, it's even possible to have such bad symptoms that you think you're having a stroke.

My doctor wants me to go reeeeeeeally slowly. 75 mg per month or less, meaning it'll take a minimum of three months to reduce my dose from 225 mg to zero. I'm not liking the look of this at all. I'm especially not liking the fact you can't get 37.5 mg extended release capsules in the UK, so I'm going to have to make up intermediate doses with a combination of the extended release capsules and the regular tablets. Seeing how badly it affected me when I got tablets instead of capsules one time by mistake, I'm quite scared.

So if you are around me over the next few months, in person, on the phone or online, and I seem to be acting like a psycho bitch from hell: a) please understand it's not my fault and b) TELL ME! Because I don't always know that I'm behaving like a crazy person until someone else points it out, and I need to know that I'm not right in order to stop it. Also, I have a higher-than-average chance of going manic (Efexor is pretty much THE WORST antidepressant still in common usage for triggering rapid cycling), so be aware that if I'm bouncing off the walls it may not be a good thing. Ask me some basic questions to see if my inhibition is lowered. Though I'd prefer it if you didn't ACT on the results of whatever I say. ("Do you want to have sex with me, on this table, in front of everyone, right now?" might well get the answer of "YES!!" even if I don't fancy you.)

Or just shoot me to be done with it :P
baratron: (introspection)
So, um... I realised somewhat belatedly that I was manic the whole of last week. That would explain the lack of sleep, the hyperactivity, the super-rapid mood shifts... I don't seem to do pure mania, but I have weird hypomanic mixed states where I oscillate between extreme perkiness and severe anxiety/panic attacks. I'm still not very good at identifying them, because, well... being bouncy/perky must always be good, right? Hmm.

On Friday night/Saturday morning, Something Very Bad happened. The sort of thing that I would never do if I was in proper control of myself. One of those bipolar impulsiveness thing that you start regretting as soon as you're back in your right brain. As a result I had to go out at the crack of dawn on Saturday for emergency medical treatment, with a followup yesterday evening and this afternoon. Yes, I am being deliberately vague about what happened and I want to keep it that way. (Apologies to the terminally nosy :P ).

I think I'm okay now mentally, but I have completely screwed up the exam I did on Monday due to doing no revision because I spent the whole weekend crying. (Three hours quickly skimming notes on Monday morning doesn't really count, does it?). Have obtained a mitigating circumstances form from college and a letter from the doctor to say I was mad, also going to talk to my mental health mentor who probably has a better idea of what to write on the form than I do. Still rather sore physically, and realising that there is Stuff From My Past that I *do* actually need to speak to someone about. Should have asked the doctor today about getting back in the queue for psychotherapy, damn. Kinda had other things on my mind.

Also, my personal tutor is now officially in need of a medal. I phoned him on Sunday night and he spent 20 minutes saying helpful things and being comforting while I cried. ("It's only an exam and your health is more important" being the one that I remember best - I'm often bad at priorities). How exactly do you go about nominating people for things like CBEs and MBEs? He needs some sort of official certification of awesomeness. I wonder if the college has any kind of award for staff who go way beyond the call of duty with regard to student welfare. If they don't, I'll go and moan at my friend in the student union until they come up with something ;)
baratron: (flasks)
Currently having incredibly rapid-cycling mood swings. Up and down like a freaking yoyo. Case in point: yesterday at 3.30 pm I was lying in bed, feeling miserable and confused from bad dreams, and in a lot of pain from thrashing around in my sleep. Yesterday at 7.30 pm I was bouncing around the room to loud music, too hysterically crazy to do anything useful. Then I crashed in a giddy, exhausted heap. 

Some kind of mood regulation system would be nice. I believe that normal people are fitted with one by default. Somehow I missed out on that, along with several other features which most of you can take for granted. It wouldn't be so bad if I could get any of my own work done - if the downs weren't so low that I can't function mentally or physically, and the ups weren't so high that I might as well be drunk. But the couple of hours of relative normality seem to fit with the couple of hours when I have to see students, and by the time I'm done with them I'm so very hyper that I can't sit still or concentrate.

I have decided to increase the amount of carbamazepine I take to 400 mg per day. This is what I was supposed to be working up to, anyway, although I seem to remember the instructions involved getting to 400 mg of CBZ and then starting to reduce the venlafaxine. Ah ha ha, like that's a possibility in my current state of anxiety. I'm sure that the week-long migraine and brain freezes would help tremendously with exam revision. I'm already losing words every couple of sentences.

[1] I know what both those words mean. But I'm not sure which is more scary: the lowest low or the highest high. They're both terrifying for different reasons. Wheeeeee *splat*.
baratron: (flasks)
Set alarm for the crack of dawn today. Discovered doctor is on annual leave. Aargh.

Apparently he'll be back on Tuesday. Which, I've just realised, is the first day after a bank holiday so the surgery will be even more crazy than usual. Bugger.

Have had very little sleep - kept waking up - and that which I have had was disjointed and filled with incredibly bizarre dreams. Wonder vaguely how I can keep going until Tuesday.
baratron: (test tube)
Fingers crossed, I'm feeling better emotionally. Carbamazepine really is a wonder drug for me, which is why I keep persisting with it despite its evilness and side-effects. Mostly calmed down about the idiots at college thanks to many supportive comments (in particular, from the mental health support group I go to - those people rock), plus the knowledge that I only have to put up with them for a few more weeks. Now anxious about other stuff to do with college :/ Why can I never just relax and get on with it?

Tonight I've been downloading exam papers from the college internet. I don't like written exams at the best of times, and two of my courses don't have any coursework, so they're 100% exam. Argh. And the past papers have too many of the sort of questions that send me into a frothing panic. For example, "Write a detailed account of platinum anti-cancer drugs, focusing on drug design and the mode of action. (20 marks)". On the basis that I walk into an exam room and have my brain empty, I can't cope with questions that have so few clues in. I like questions that are broken down into lots of steps: part i, 4 marks. part ii, 6 marks. part iii, 5 marks. part iv, 5 marks. At least that way if your brain goes numb you can still get some marks.

Going to bed soon. Ridiculously tired this weekend, not helped by the pain in my head. I think I've had a headache in my left eye since Wednesday, although it might have been since Tuesday. Probably a sinus headache caused by impacted snot from large amounts of crying. Bah.

Also, I need to write a livejournal entry about fluffiness, my friends, and fun things I've been doing lately instead of all this angsting and mope. And foods I've been eating. Mmm.
baratron: (flasks)
So now I'm terribly curious about whether or not I'm hypothyroid. I looked up the list of symptoms and could easily tick off more than half of them. I've been very tired all winter - unusually so even considering that I have SAD and chronic fatigue - and excessively cold, having to wear far more layers of clothes than other people just to stay warm enough. My skin has been very dry for months even before the itching started and despite all the cream and lip balm I use, and I've just noticed this week that my hair is falling out more than usual. I've also had concentration problems, total lack of motivation, weight gain and absolutely no sex drive - though these could be due to depression.

The problem is this: my TSH has gone from 3.81 uIU/mL in August to 5.16 uIU/mL now - but this is only just outside the range for "normal" in the UK, and the doctor's computer isn't bothered because it knows that carbamazepine can cause a falsely high TSH reading. So I did some research, and it seems that carbamazepine can mess up the results for just about all of the thyroid hormones (if the link breaks, it's pages 1253-1254). It can cause falsely high TSH and TBG (Thyroxine-Binding Globulin), and falsely low triiodothyronine (T3) in serum. And it can cause both falsely high and falsely low free thyroxine (T4) in serum! How do you actually confirm hypothyroidism if a medication you're on can mess up all the numbers?

Read more... it's a bit long. )
baratron: (goggles)
If this is disjointed, bear with me. My brain isn't working too well.

Today the itching has been so bad that I decided I can't possibly go on as is. I didn't have a rash for all the months I was on 200 mg of carbamazepine, but I developed one within 6 weeks of increasing the dose. (The usual timescale for such things is 3-8 weeks.) What I wanted to do was keep going at 300 mg and see if the rash went away, but I just can't stand it, and it's too long until the blood test results will be back on Thursday or Friday. I really can't express what it's like to itch, itch, itch the whole time so that concentrating on anything becomes almost impossible.

So today I only took 200 mg. I figured that I'd have a couple of days of relative sanity before severe SAD and inability to use brain came back, which would be enough time for the purpose. I totally forgot about my menstrual cycle. Which would be why I've spent the past couple of hours sitting here reading fanfic on the internet and crying my eyes out.

ARGH!
baratron: (baratron again)
The other day I was in the lift at Goodge Street tube station with some UCL students. (I know they were UCL students because they were talking about their lectures – and one of them had a UCL bag). One of the girls was wearing a pair of beautiful purple velvet ballet shoes. You can tell they were beautiful shoes because I noticed them – me, the woman who doesn't really care about footwear. She was bemoaning the fact that they had been soaked with water and were now ruined. I had some sympathy because they really were quite delightfully purple, but had to wonder why someone who studied in London thought it appropriate to wear non-waterproof shoes in November. It's not as if torrential rain is exactly uncommon here...


I managed to freak out my course director slightly today with my amazing psychic ability to know where he was despite the fact the room he was in a) was not his office and b) had an opaque door. Read more... )


Am currently trying to decide whether I am a genius or an idiot. I oscillate between the two positions at a rate of knots, sometimes espousing both positions multiple times within a single minute of a lecture. For some reason, my brain just isn't willing to deal with the intermediate perspective – that I am a person who knows some things but not others. I wish I knew where that all or nothing approach came from.
baratron: (ankh)
ARGH. My level of stress is now THROUGH THE ROOF.

I have had a weird sore throat thing going on for over a month. Cut due to discussion of snot. )

Because I was feeling so utterly rotten yesterday, I crawled out of bed around 11 am today to take an extra 100 mg of carbamazepine. (I'm supposed to get the dose up to 400 mg, but have been stuck on 200 mg for months now.) I then had great trouble falling back to sleep because my throat was so excessively dried out and sore, and drinking water was simply making me need to get up and go to the toilet. When I eventually got up about 3 pm, I took the refill prescription of carbamazepine along to the pharmacy with the prescription for the antihistamine that I'd collected.

Well. The new antihistamine (loratadine) is one that carbamazepine interacts with. RXlist says that loratadine increases plasma carbamazepine levels. It doesn't say "Do not take loratadine and carbamazepine together", but I'd like to check the extent of the increase in plasma levels to know whether they are safe to combine without a dosage change. Especially as loratadine and terfenadine are mentioned in the drug interactions bit of my patient information leaflet. So I am unimpressed with doctor #2 for failing to check that, especially after I'd said "I'm on carbamazepine" just in case she hadn't read that part of my medical notes.

And my refill of carbamazepine came in a different box with a different patient information leaflet, which I of course read due to this being a drug of great evil - and it says "if you get a persistent sore throat or high temperature or both stop taking the tablets and tell your doctor AT ONCE". I have no clue whether the weird throat thing I've been having "counts" as the type of persistent sore throat, as the description is too damn vague. But I have clearly been having some sort of new allergy thing going on recently. And RXlist says "Patients should be made aware of the early toxic signs and symptoms of a potential hematologic problem, as well as dermatologic, hypersensitivity or hepatic reactions. These symptoms may include, but are not limited to, fever, sore throat, ... anorexia, nausea/vomiting, or jaundice. The patient should be advised that, because these signs and symptoms may signal a serious reaction, that they must report any occurrence immediately to a physician. In addition, the patient should be advised that these signs and symptoms should be reported even if mild".

So now the only thing to do is to wait until I can see my own doctor who I actually TRUST to get things right. The earliest I can see him is Friday, and I will try to make it very clear to the receptionists that it is an emergency and I need to see him. Funnily enough, I now trust neither doctors #1 nor #2. The thing that pisses me off most is that I SPECIFICALLY SAID to doctor #1 that I was worried about it being a medication side-effect.

And I need carbamazepine because it's the only thing stopping me from jumping out of a sixth floor window right now, and I have to go to college as usual tomorrow, and I'm supposed to be going to talk to the Disabilities Office and all I can about is how urgently I need to see a doctor who knows how carbamazepine allergies manifest. Especially as I always knew I had a higher-than-average chance of carbamazepine allergy due to genetics. Fuck fuck FUCK!!
baratron: (flasks)
It's always somewhat complicated when one of your long-term diagnoses gets changed.

I have known since the summer of 1995 that I have clinical depression. Unipolar, atypical, with psychotic features and severe premenstrual disorder on top. Not very exciting to me here in 2008.

Well, apparently I actually don't. It's bipolar II, sometimes called "Depression Plus". ARGH!

I thought I knew what unipolar and bipolar were. I swear last time I looked things up I was definitely still unipolar with mood cycling on top. In fact this DSM description (yes, I know I don't live in the US so the DSM isn't directly relevant) claims you can't be bipolar II if you've ever had a Mixed Episode. Bah. Apparently, while I was busy doing other stuff with my life, doctors were fiddling with the definitions. Now, there is something called the Bipolar Spectrum - just like the Autistic Spectrum, only with mood disorders! Personally, I've had what that site calls "Roller coaster depression", "Depression with profound anxiety" and "Depressive episodes with irritable episodes", sometimes all at the same time. Read more... )

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