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IMPORTANT: HOW TO USE THIS INFORMATION: This is a summary and does NOT have all possible information about this product. This information does not assure that this product is safe, effective, or appropriate for you. This information is not individual medical advice and does not substitute for the advice of your health care professional. Always ask your health care professional for complete information about this product and your specific health needs.
LITHIUM - ORAL
COMMON BRAND NAME(S): Eskalith
WARNING: It is very important to have the right amount of lithium in your body. Too much lithium may lead to unwanted effects such as nausea, diarrhea, shaking of the hands, dizziness, twitching, seizures, slurred speech, confusion, or increase in the amount of urine. Tell your doctor immediately if these effects occur.
There is only a small difference between the correct amount of lithium and too much lithium. Therefore, it is important that your doctor monitor you closely during treatment. Keep all medical and laboratory appointments while you are taking lithium.
USES: This medication is used to treat manic-depressive disorder (bipolar disorder). It works to stabilize the mood and reduce extremes in behavior by restoring the balance of certain natural substances (neurotransmitters) in the brain.
Some of the benefits of continued use of this medication include decreasing how often manic episodes occur and decreasing the symptoms of manic episodes, such as exaggerated feelings of well-being, feelings that others wish to harm you, irritability, anxiousness, rapid/loud speech, and aggressive/hostile behaviors.
OTHER USES: This section contains uses of this drug that are not listed in the approved professional labeling for the drug but that may be prescribed by your health care professional. Use this drug for a condition that is listed in this section only if it has been so prescribed by your health care professional.
This medication may also be used to prevent a certain type of headache (cluster headache).
HOW TO USE: There are different brands and forms of this medication available. They may not have the same effects. Do not change brands or forms without asking your doctor or pharmacist.
Take this medication by mouth as directed by your doctor, usually 3-4 times daily. Take lithium with or immediately after meals to lessen stomach upset. Drink 8 to 12 glasses (8 ounces or 240 milliliters each) of water or other fluid each day, and eat a healthy diet with normal amounts of salt (sodium) as directed by your doctor or dietician while taking this medication. Large changes in the amount of salt in your diet may change your lithium blood levels. Do not change the amount of salt in your diet unless your doctor tells you to do so.
The dosage is based on your medical condition, lithium blood levels, and response to treatment. This medication works best if the amount of the drug in your body is kept at a constant level. Therefore, take this drug at evenly spaced intervals. Use this medication regularly to get the most benefit from it. To help you remember, take it at the same times each day.
If you are using the liquid form of this medication, carefully measure the dose using a special measuring device/spoon. Do not use a household spoon because you may not get the correct dose.
This medication must be taken exactly as prescribed. It is important to continue taking this medication even if you feel well. Do not stop taking this drug without consulting your doctor. Some conditions may become worse when this drug is suddenly stopped. Consult your doctor or pharmacist for more details.
Tell your doctor if your condition does not improve or if it worsens. It may take 1 to 3 weeks to notice improvement in your condition.
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