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Dr. Kaushik
Dr. Kaushik, Psychiatrist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 4661
Experience:  MD Psychiatry
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I just turned 40 and am so forgetful that it has become a

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I just turned 40 and am so forgetful that it has become a serious problem at work, and disrupts my personal life as well. I have a diagnosis of bipolar II, after having been considered Depressive for many years. The forgetfullness is accellerating. Do you think it is the illness, the drugs, or could it be something unrelated? It is unusual for my age.

Hi there ,

Welcome to Just answer !

Kindly answer a few questions..

1) Since how many days are you feeling forgetful ?

2) what exactly do you mean when you say that you have become forgetful , is it that you are unable to recall and remember names of your near and dear ones , your route to the house , your bank account number , etc such important things or is it that your forgetfulness is more towards confusion and inattentiveness ?

3) how are your bipolar symptoms ? are they under control?

Kindly answer the queries against their numbers and i shall get back to you with an appropriate reply.


Customer: replied 7 years ago.

Hello Dr. Kaushik,

Sorry for the delay.

I'm afraid I misinterpreted your first question. I'm not sure how long I've been forgetful. I do know that I used to pride myself on a "steel trap" memory. I think it has been maybe five years since I've had that ability.

1) I am forgetful every single day, and I'm sure I inflate the experience in my own mind, but it feels as though I only experience short bursts of clarity.

2) The forgetfulness is definitely more about concentration and attention, though I do sometimes forget where I am supposed to be driving, what I was in the middle of doing, or what the end of the sentence I just started was going to be. Still, I would say my forgetfulness (this is the word others use to describe it to me), is about just simply forgetting that I am supposed to do something, or forgetting a step in a series of steps needed to complete a task. I hope that helps.

3) today my bipolar symptoms are fine, but I have been rapid-cycling, trending toward longer periods of Depression, though I believe the prozac may be helping. My illness has not been under good control for a long time -- I would say five or seven years.

Thanks for the reply..

Well, your forgetfulness that you complain of is actually more of a lack of concentration and focus , for which your psychiatrist has rightly started you on a pschostimulant such as ADDERALL ( amphetamine salts ) , but since you are a case of rapid cycling bipolar disorder , so you have been put on 2 mood stabilizers , namely lamictal and Trileptal , 1 anti psychotic such as abilify and 1 anti depressant such as prozac , and 1 anxiolytic such as ativan , this regime compriing of all these drugs makes for a good treatment strategy for rapid cycling bipolar disorder, but , i believe your lack of concentration and focus , which you self describe as forgetfulness , are probably due to the side effect of LAMICTAL , WHICH CAUSES decreased concentration and focus as one of it's side effects .

Kindly see the link below.. ( see side effects --- central nervous system )

So, what we can do now is that you can discuss with your doctor 2 possibilities to overcome your forgetfulness, aka decreased concentration and focus , and these are -- first possibility is to switch over to Adderall XR , that is extended release version of adderall , acting throughout the day , better than adderall ( plain ) that you are taking as of now , so this will take care of your forgetfulness.

Second possibility could be that since lamictal is the one causing forgetfulness as a side effect , so you can ask your doctor to reduce the dose to half of what you are taking right now , that is 600 mg / day .

A third possibility can also be there , which can be brought to use if first two possibilities do not help as much as expected , and this possibility is to apply both first and second possibilities together that is , switching over to adderall xr from adderall and reducing the dose of lamictal to half of present dose ,that is 600 mg / day.

So, kindly discuss this with your treating psychiatrist / doctor and get started on the changes in your regime , and i am quite this will take care of your forgetfulness.

I hope this helps..

I wish you all the best..

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