Slideshows Images Quizzes

Copyright © 2018 by RxList Inc. RxList does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. See additional information.

Lamictal

USER REVIEWS

Comment from: jag020372, 35-44 on Treatment for 6 months - 1 year (Patient) Published: July 19

I am writing this letter to express my sincere gratitude for this medication - it has changed my life. I recently began lamictal in treatment of bipolar disorder. I had been on SSRI antidepressants since around the age of 20. I thought they were working, but yet, I was still extremely depressed, anxious, and unpredictable in my behaviors. I cried all the time, became angry frequently, and felt out of control emotionally. I struggled to keep a job for longer than a year, stay in my marriage, stay focused on any one thing, or have any semblance of a balanced, healthy life. I was only ever offered SSRIs and I thought my life experience was the best it was ever going to be. I was addicted to cigarettes, alcohol, and food. I didn't realize how bad I actually was, until I started using the lamictal product in January of this year. Suddenly, who I was completely changed. This is my best self - the person I never imagined that I could be. My whole life has changed in ways I never thought possible. I don't feel so overwhelmed and tortured with guilt or depression. I am successful at work, I purchased my own home, I lost 50 lbs, and I am stable in many, many ways I never thought possible. I do attribute this to lamictal, because of the immediate and significant changes that I have experienced. The simple addition of this medication in my life has made these things possible. If I had known the person I could be under these conditions, things in my life would have been very different for years. I do not regret the past, as it is in the past, but I do look forward to my future so very very much more than I ever have. I have been able to start my life over in a more productive and healthy manner. I cannot say enough about this drug - it has saved my life.

Comment from: aedancerchick14, 19-24 on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: April 10

Lamictal has changed my life....and unfortunately...not for the better. I started taking Lamictal in 2002...and almost 7 years later I am still suffering the effects Lamictal has left on me. As a result of taking Lamictal,I developed Stevens Johnson Syndrome...this is the "rash" the doctor's might tell you about as a side effect. SJS however is far more than that. If you get this so called "rash" from Lamictal...it gives you a reaction that litterally makes your skin peel off and blister and cause your skin to have chemical burns from the inside out. This was an extremely awful and painful experience. Lamictal sent me to the burn center for 6 weeks and gave me a ventilator, because the skin on my lungs was sloughing off as a result of the medication and I couldn't breathe on my own. I would give anything to go back and never have taken Lamictal. Maybe for some people, when you have no other option, you might have to use it as a last resort..but for me their were so many other options. You also have to watch out for swollen lymph nodes this could be a sign that you are getting an allergic reaction. The chemical burns from the Lamictal made it so there were blisters in my eyes and now I have unbearable eye pain and eye problems. My eyes do not look normal I have redness pain, dry eye syndrome,(severe,I have to use eyedrops about 10-20 times a day) photophobia,trichiasis,blepharitis,droopy,swollen eyelids, and constant eye infections because of this. I have scars and have also lost all my fingernails and toenails because I lost my nail beds as a direct result of Lamictal. I also am very sensitive to hot and cold temperature and cannot be our for long periods of time. It is such a hassle and has hindered me in life. Now,if you are thinking, this happened to just one of those unlucky people who are one out of a million, you are wrong The risk is a lot higher than you think. It is 1/100. just please be careful and ASK YOUR DOCTOR ABOUT STEVENS JOHNSON SYNDROME. God Bless

Related Reading: lamictal | rash | burns

Comment from: klgpoet, 35-44 on Treatment for 6 months - 1 year (Patient) Published: October 12

I have been on Abilify, Risperdal and Seroquel to name a few. I was on 10 meds at one time and still a mess if not worse. Now I take Lanictal, Klonopin and Rozerem, only three and my quality of life has improved drastically. My mood swings are lessened greatly and most weeks pretty nonivasive to my life activity. I think the Lamictal is primairly repsonsible. I am diagnosed with BiPolar Disorder, Anxiety Disorder and PTSD.

Related Reading: abilify | risperdal | seroquel

Comment from: Shirley, 55-64 on Treatment for 1-2 years (Patient) Published: August 20

I was diagnosed with Bipolar II a few years ago. It took my psychiatrist and therapist about a year to convince me to try Lamictal. Can't believe how well it works - no more depression! I don't cry for no reason now and I feel more like getting out and doing things. Has helped with my racing and obsessive thoughts also. Only side effects are slight hair loss, trouble sometimes finding words and dropping things. However, no one is going to take this drug away from me.

Related Reading: depression | hair loss

Comment from: sistercate, 25-34 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: May 20

I have my life back. I could leave it at that. But I would like to tell you HOW. I have been suffering with bipolar 2 for 6 years now. I literally thought I had become a crazy, worthless person. I couldn't remember conversations with co-workers and I think I was about to lose my job. My boss told me to see a psychiatrist. He is a good guy...I think that was going to be the last attempt for him to help me before firing me. I used to be a highly functioning person. I managed to graduate from college with a 3.2 GPA without going to class even 50% of the time. I loved physical activity and reading and music. 6 years ago everything changed. I was in a grad program and failed out. I was going to class and studying constantly but I was having major memory problems. Then I started having depression, then hypomanic episodes. I was just a complete mess. My psychiatrist put me on Lamictal slowly while slowly weaning me off of Lexapro. Now I am at 400mg daily and I feel wonderful. I am back to being a highly active, functioning person. I am me for the first time in 6 years. My husband is delighted--he only knew me AFTER the bipolar set in. He has loved me through all of this, but now he is just amazed at what a better person I have become. Still me, obviously, but without all of the drama. :-) Not every drug is right for everyone. Lamictal was just the one that was right for me. I am a success story. I am so happy to have my life back.

Related Reading: depression | lamictal | lexapro

Comment from: CaityCatherine, 25-34 on Treatment for 1-2 years (Patient) Published: June 26

Lamictal saved my life. It was a miracle for me. I feel like I don't have mental health issues at all since I started on it a year ago. 150mg pills twice a day and I am healthy, happy, and stable. Just don't mix it with alcohol! It throws me into a mild depression for 2-3 days if I drink. Otherwise it is wonderful. I had gained 30 lbs on SSRIs. I went off of them and onto Lamictal and 4 months later the weight was off and I was back to normal without even dieting. This drug is wonderful.

Related Reading: mental health

Comment from: Me, 45-54 on Treatment for 1-2 years (Patient) Published: March 01

I was diagnosed Bipolar- II almost two years ago.Lamictal and Zoloft were the first drugs that were prescribed for me. I never felt right on the Zoloft or any SSRI or SNRI for that matter. I got up to the 300mg doses of lamictal and felt it had stopped being as effective as it was in the beginning. This took 1/2 year to poop out. I then started looking for alternatives as my Doc. at the time just wanted me to slowly increase lamictal, yet I felt I needed another med. Well, I went back to my first Doc. that diagnosed me, and tried different meds., but after reading a book called Bi-polar II, from the library I found that the gold standard, for Bi-polar is Lithium Carbonate ER. So I suggested this to my doc. and I have been taking it along with 150mg Lamictal for less than a week. I tell you, I have felt some calmness, and peace with the Lithium add-on already and look forward to more. She only started me at 300mg twice a day. We will do bloodwork soon to see if I need an increase for the theraputic level. I just wanted to pass this along to others, as lithium was the first med. available to treat bipolar and sometimes docs. go with the newer meds. that the drug companies produce. It may have side effects, check them out with your doc. So far though I have been excercising 30min. a day and cutting out gluten and sugars, eating more good carbs. and protein, no weight gain yet. I tell you the side effects may be so minimal for me that I don't feel anything but benefit for Lithium so far. I'll keep you posted. I am in therapy every two weeks,working part-time, and have a great marriage with two great teenage girls. It isn't easy to make it trough each day, sometimes I force myself to sit back and be thankful for what I do have and have managed to keep up with considering my mental health and lack of sleep, (getting better). Thank you for all of your messages on Web MD, I have read many.

Related Reading: zoloft | lithium carbonate | lithium

Comment from: [email protected], 45-54 on Treatment for 6 months - 1 year (Patient) Published: September 25

i dont lie in my bed constantly, im not obsessed with thoughts of suicide. i dont stay up all hours of the night and sleep late and just want to stay in bed all the time. im not so angry and dont cry all the time anymore. i dont think caffeine is good for bipolar disorder, it makes me nervous and manic feeling in my head if i drink very much of it!!

Related Reading: suicide | bipolar disorder

Comment from: ET, 45-54 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: October 29

I have been misdiagnosed for almost 20 years. I have been severely depressed and at times suicidal. Then I would have small manic phases. I thought I was crazy! After about 10 days on this medicine, I feel like a new and very different woman! I am loving life and my family has seen an amazing turn around in my mood and outlook on life.

QUESTION

If you have had a seizure, it means you have epilepsy. See Answer
Comment from: 19-24 on Treatment for 6 months - 1 year (Patient) Published: October 12

I have been on Lamictal for about 6 months, and have noticed a big difference in my moods, etc. I am currently taking 300mg to sleep better, as well as 50mg of Zoloft to make whatever depressive episodes, or excess stress, less strong. The only downside I've noticed is that I feel fatigued during the day. Overall, I am grateful for finally finding something that works!

Related Reading: lamictal | zoloft | stress

Comment from: Dfp66, 45-54 Female on Treatment for 6 months - 1 year (Patient) Published: August 08

I have been on every medication possible for depression since I was 12 years old. In December 2010 I attempted suicide and was placed in an intensive outpatient treatment program. I was diagnosed with Bipolar II and Anxiety Disorder and was put on Lamictal and Xanax (.50 mg). My therapeutic level for the Lamictal was/is 150mg (200mg caused difficulties sleeping). The Lamictal helped with the depression and "dark thoughts". I was on the meds from December 2010 - March 2012 and got cocky and decided I was cured and didn't need the meds anymore (not realizing the truth the meds were doing what they were suppose to do). At first I was fine but by November 2013 things began spinning out of control with my depression and hypo mania. In May 2014 I was so distraught and spiraled down again that I left work went home and cut myself 17 times. Once again I was back in intensive outpatient treatment but for longer this time. I was put back on the Lamictal the end of May 2014 and once again the "dark thoughts" have subsided and I am feeling stronger again (and have managed to deal with four deaths of friends the past three weeks and though my emotions were grief and pain which are expected, the out of control bleakness has not occurred). I have had to come to terms that I will always require med management for my disorder and can not go off my meds again as my "experiment" of being fine without them was a complete failure. I am not saying everyone will experience the same results and obviously by the mixed reviews many have not. All I know is after 36 years of medication experimentation Lamictal has proven to be the one which was by far the most effective for me! (FYI - I experienced no side effects other than sleep difficulties at 200 mg and so it was readjusted back to 150 mg which has proven the best level for me.)

Related Reading: depression | suicide | anxiety

Comment from: Joey_H, 55-64 Female on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: March 16

I'm 63. I was diagnosed bipolar in 1991 with possible ad/hd, which was confirmed by a long test administered by an expert in the field. From 2001 on, having lost insurance with a divorce, I was forced to seek treatment at the VA! Not good!!! Having been treated by 6 doctors there, the only were treating the depression aspect of my disorder. I was unaware of this as most of these doctors were impatient and few could speak adequate English. Finally, I was declared disabled by SS and received my Medicare card July 1 of 09. I purchased an Advantage Plan from a private health insurance company to allow me great access to health care. $ months ago, I had my first session with a highly recommended private psychiatrist. I presented my medications for review. In less than 3 minutes, he declared: "You're not on any mood stabilizer." Imagine my surprise and displeasure. All those years, the flip-flopping of moods, all the different combination of medications, all the family, spousal dysfunction, with divorces and separations, all the hope that the next mediation would do it and last! The new doctor prescribed this drug. Literally, within a week, and only on the trial pack, I was a new man! I hadn't felt this good in years. Everything changed. I'm also taking Cymbalta for depression but at much lower dose. Gradually, he increased my dose of Lamictal,to 200mg. And though, my current wife is living somewhere in Indiana, and there since right after her accompanying me to the new doctor, I'm naturally feeling depression as there no contact with her and I love and care for her deeply and I believe she me, I'm managing to take care of things I could not manage before. I'm opening mail, paying bills, taking showers, doing some writing, more of less living a more 'normal' life. This medication has turned my life around! I pray that these results continue. I can't praise this drug more highly. After 4-5 months, still doing fine, in spite of living alone and missing my wife. A new me!!!!

Related Reading: cymbalta

Comment from: Nate, 25-34 Female on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: October 20

I started taking Lamictal a month ago and it has honestly changed my life. I've been struggling with mood swings for a long time, but I never sought treatment. I assumed what I was going through was the normal wear and tear of life, but it wasn't. My mood swings started affecting my life, from my job, to my relationship with my new wife. I talked to my doctor about my mood swings and he recommended Lamictal. Since I started taking the medication a month ago I have literally not had a single mood swing. I feel happier than I have in years. If you want a medication that works and gives absolutely no side effects then this is the medication for you! (duh)

Comment from: Drum and Bass, 25-34 Female on Treatment for 1-2 years (Patient) Published: April 13

I was first diagnosed with depression which turned out to be very wrong as things got so bad with taking an anti-depressant that I start getting sucidal thoughts and was crying all the time. Finally, I did my own research and went and saw a mental health doctor that was able to diagnose Bi-polar disorder extremely fast. Lamictal was the first and only drug I have ever tried for bi-polar and it makes such a difference that I was shocked. I can't beleive how many years I went thinking my moods were normal. No more mania where my thoughts race and no more crying either. I noticed 12 hours or so after taking the pill it must wear off or something becaue my thoughts become fuzzy again. I now take the pill first thing upon rising and it works fine. No other side effects really, but if I forget to take the pill for even one day, I do feel a difference. If you are truly bipolar then give it a shot. My doctor informs me it's one of the best drugs for bipolar patients as it has very few side effects. I have been on the drug for a couple years and can't beleive how much better things are.

Related Reading: mental health

Comment from: Elizabeth, 35-44 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: June 01

I have never written a review of anything in my life but I can't say enough about this drug and I wanted other people who are bipolar to benefit. You can start at a low dose and work your way up gradually. Lamictal prevented me from backsliding further into my depression and brought me out of it. I am not depressed and feeling stable for the first time in five months. Please try this drug and I hope it works for you!

Related Reading: lamictal | depression

Comment from: Steadman, 25-34 Female on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: January 12

Lamictal has been great. After having tried other mood stabilisers (Tegretol, Epilim) antidepressants (Lexapro, Prozac and Effexor) and antipsychotics (Abilify, Seroquel and Zyprexa) I finally am starting to feel better. Before I used to stay in bed all day and took absolutely no pleasure in doing anything. But no I have got my mojo back and am starting to become more active. Still have some trouble sleeping and am taking Seroquel to help sleep and also to boost the effect of the Lamictal, it's not as good as Benzos but at least it is not addictive. Currently taking 75mg of Lamictal and am gradually increasing to 200mg. Only side effects I have noticed are a slight unsteadiness when getting up and some insomnia. I have a soft bipolar II with only moderate hypo-manic episodes, still enough to make me do stupid stuff. Hope others find Lamictal as effective at treating bipolar depression as I have. One more thing, does the ease of use rating seem a bit redundant, as the vast majority of medications are taken orally it is not exactly difficult to swallow a pill. Just a thought.

Related Reading: tegretol | antidepressants | lexapro

Comment from: odwassquad, 35-44 on Treatment for 2-5 years (Patient) Published: October 10

My best advice to anyone with depression and/or bi-polar disorder is to try any meds that are offered or are available. It took a while to find the medications that worked for me. Don't be worried about taking more than one drug either. I have been taking Lamictal for 3 1/2 YEARS. I am taking 400 mg and have been for most of that time period. I have had excellent results on this med, and have had no side effects at all, ever, nor have I had any significant weight gain. This medicine has worked wonderful for ME. It has stabilized my mood dramatically. I also take Wellbutrin 450 mg, and Seroquel 100 mg. This is the "cocktail" of meds that have worked for me. As I said, I have been on this combo of drugs for 3 1/2 years. Medicine affects everyone differently. Don't think that just because one person had serious side effects that you will also. This medicine may be just what you need. Sometimes you have to trust the doctor more than the reviewers. The doctors know what the side effects may be. They are in no way trying to hurt you! They trying to help you the only way they know how! Good luck and God bless you! There is hope, just don't give up!

Related Reading: wellbutrin | seroquel

Comment from: AEDANCERCHICK14, 19-24 on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: July 03

Lamictal has changed my life.and unfortunately not for the better. I started taking Lamictal in 2002.and almost 7 years later I am still suffering the effects Lamictal has left on me. As a result of taking Lamictal,I developed Stevens Johnson Syndrome...this is the "rash" the doctor's might tell you about as a side effect. SJS however is far more than that. If you get this so called "rash" from Lamictal...it gives you a reaction that litterally makes your skin peel off and blister and cause your skin to have chemical burns from the inside out. This was an extremely awful and painful experience. I was in the burn center for 6 weeks and gave me a ventilator, because the skin on my lungs was sloughing off as a result of the medication and I couldn't breathe on my own. I would give anything to go back and never have taken Lamictal. Maybe for some people, when you have no other option, you might have to use it as a last resort..but for me their were so many other options. You also have to watch out for swollen lymph nodes this could be a sign that you are getting an allergic reaction. The chemical burns from the Lamictal made it so there were blisters in my eyes and now I have unbearable eye pain and eye problems. My eyes do not look normal I have redness pain, dry eye syndrome,(severe,I have to use eyedrops about 10-20 times a day) photophobia,trichiasis,blepharitis,droopy,swollen eyelids, and constant eye infections because of this. I have scars and have also lost all my fingernails and toenails because I lost my nail beds as a direct result of Lamictal. I also am very sensitive to hot and cold temperature and cannot be out for long periods of time.IMPORTANTIf you get SJS..it MIGHT NOT STOP AFTER YOU STOP THE MEDS... IT MAY HAVE TO RUN ITS COURSE!Now,if you are thinking, this happened to just one of those people who are one out of a million, you are wrong The risk is a lot higher than you think. just please be careful and ASK YOUR DOCTOR ABOUT STEVENS JOHNSON SYNDROME

Related Reading: rash | burns | swollen lymph nodes

IMAGES

See Images
Comment from: Katie1971, 35-44 on Treatment for less than 1 month (Patient) Published: April 16

I have been taking Lamictal (generic form) for approx. 3 weeks and words can not truly express how much this Rx has changed my life for the better! Before taking this med I was living with so much emotional agony and strife...terrible mood swings, chaotic relationships, could not hold a stable job,etc. I finally hit rock bottom and saw a psychiatrist. Was initially scared to take meds because of the scary potential side effects. But I was willing to try anything to save my life & sanity!!! Within ONLY 2 days of taking 25 mg I felt much, MUCH better. Very calm ,without the erratic mood swings. Now I am up to 50 mg daily and feel even better. My boyfriend was on the verge of breaking up with me before lamictal, he just could not handle my raging mood swings and verbal abuse. Now we are happy and finally have a loving,healthy relationship!!! THIS MEDICINE IS A GODSEND!!!! AI RECOMMEND IT TO ANYONE WHO IS SUFFERING IN MISERY AND WANTS TO FINALLY ACQUIRE INNER PEACE.

Related Reading: lamictal

Comment from: 25-34 Female on Treatment for 6 months - 1 year (Patient) Published: August 26

After being treated with numerous antidepressants, with no luck, and often worsening of symptoms, I was finally put on Lamictal by my psychiatrist (3rd psychiatrist). I noticed a great improvement after only 3 weeks of being on the medication. Now I'm stable and on 100 mg a day which is quite low but it works wonders for me. No more irritability, feelings of guilt, mood swings and depression. This really is the holy grail for me. I also have noticed any side effects.

Related Reading: antidepressants | depression

Comment from: Elizabeth, 55-64 on Treatment for 10+ years (Patient) Published: October 04

I am alive today thanks to Lamictal and a good doctor. If the world goes to hell I am kicking in the back door of CVS. I don't want narcotics. I want Lamictal.

Comment from: risenone, 45-54 on Treatment for 2-5 years (Patient) Published: September 21

This medication has been a God Send!! I was on Lithium but it really gave me bad gastrointestinal problems. I take 300mg a day of Lamictal and though the Dr still has some tweaking to do every now and then it is great. I do have the dry mouth bad, confusion, and alittle spacey but compared to the alternative this has changed my life. I am a cutter and that is almost nonexistenct now. The depression is so much better and my manic eposides are more under control. I was at the end of my rope. I had tried almost everything and nothing worked or it made me gain weight too bad. I don't have that problem with this drug. The trade off with the other side effects I do have are worth the benefit I receive from this drug by far.

Related Reading: lithium | dry mouth

Comment from: amy295, 25-34 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: December 06

This medication was a miricle drug for me. For the first time in my life, I got to experience 'normal'. My seizures are in the temporal lobe, so I got to even feel normal emotions. My sleep patterns were normal for the first time in my life. I had a normal schedule. I played with my kids outside. I got angry without hate, I felt happiness without overconsuming joy. My mind did not race anymore. I could think and process one thought at a time. I could play, work, sleep, and enjoy all the benefits of life I could never enjoy before. I didn't even know it was possible to have that kind of of a life until Lamictal. I thought I had found the answer to all my issues until one day, almost three months into my treatment, something terrible happened without warning. I took my evening dose and exactly two hours later, my fever spiked to over 103, I developed a raised rash on my forehead, I began vomiting, and then I passed out out of nowhere. I thought I had a virus. I took my morning dose and the rash spread thru my scalp and began to peel off taking my hair with it. I had never been so sick in my entire life. I had to immediately stop the medicine due to Stephens Johnsons Syndrome. Due to the sudden stop, I began going thru withdraw and the seizures became intense. I don't know what will replace the Lamictal, but at least I know now what normal feel like. I will recogonize it when I find it again. Nothing else has come close yet. I'm still looking.

Related Reading: fever | rash

Comment from: ..., 13-18 on Treatment for 1-6 months Published: January 25

I have a 13 year old daughter who has been diagnosed with mood disorder and possible bipolar disorder (along with many other things). She has been on so many meds in the last two years i can barely keep count. When she was started on Lamictal, she was taking buspar, abilify, klonapin, and other drugs for acid reflux and hypothyroidism. That is alot for a 13 year old to be on... 3 months after starting lamictal, she is down to just lamictal and her thyroid meds. she is happier, and healthier because of this med. I am so thankful for this medication. It has really helped my baby girl.

Related Reading: bipolar disorder | buspar | abilify

Comment from: 45-54 on Treatment for 1-6 months (Patient) Published: January 11

I have read a lot of the reviews and I must say i am exrremely grateful after 30 years of being misdiagnosed and medicated that i feel normal for the first time. I have decluttered my whole house effortlessly, organized things that I never seemed to be able to do.I did try I managed to get all A's in a sw master's program 20 years ago i wanted to help others and understand myself.It was exhausting. Infact everything I ever achieved was never as far as I dreamed and took a lot out of me to function.Now I hope this lasts because Everyday that goes by and i am able to keep going forward with organizing dealing with life calmly and most importantly enjoy spending time with my son. I would be out of it and have to go to bed or so caught up in something that i was there but not really.I am able to move forward with friends, events, tasks and routines. I believe drinking smoking not get enough sleep, hormonally unbalanced (I was) stress and not having a healthy life style w food and exercise,lower the chances of having great success with any drug. after 2 months on this drug, i had a glass of wine I haven't had any alcohol in months I had a migraine body aches foggy brain. I got over it . Some people say that coffee alcohol cashews and chocolate need to be cut out.The chocolate gets in once in a while, coffee too but i mostly drink decaf, I am going forward and not looking back at what I created because of promises broken no shows, paranoia and just not functioning so many dreams crushed friends lost. I value my mental functioning more than anything and love this new found freedom and ease in my ability to be in the world I have just performed my music. Passionate lyrics and music i have written over the years i can do it now. I hope to keep new friends and hopefully my family will gain respect and understanding when they see me functioning consistently at such a higher level.I wish all of you the same.Would like to know your stories. May I always feel this way.

Related Reading: smoking | stress

SLIDESHOW

What Is Epilepsy? Symptoms, Causes, and Treatments See Slideshow
References

Medical Editor: John P. Cunha, DO, FACOEP

Health Solutions From Our Sponsors