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My family is hurting my 83 year old mother. They don't visit…

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My family is hurting...

My family is hurting my 83 year old mother. They don't visit her..instead they pump her with drugs and send her to a shrink. Honestly all she needs is someone there helping her. Her physical condition is good..1/ Prozac for many years…that did not work no longer popular2/ zoloft.3/ Wellbutrin https://www.drugs.com/cdi/wellbutrin-xl.html did not work ( please note, this drug can be weaned off quickly and is out of the system in 24 hours - withdrawals with this drug are minimum4/- started October 2nd - venlafaxine https://www.drugs.com/sfx/venlafaxine-side-effects.html
https://www.drugs.com/comments/venlafaxine/for-depression.html
Here you can see its good for some, and bad for just as many.5/ early November 2017 doctor gave her a higher dose venlafaxine because former was not working; From my research, this stuff is hard for the average person to wean off . If you guys want her on this, that is final and its hard for her to get off6/ now I think it lexipro 5 MG now 10 MG can you advise if these drugs are healthy? is this normal?

Doctor's Assistant: How long have you had the pain? What seems to make the pain better or worse?

You did not read my e-mail what a joke

Submitted: 3 months ago.Category: Mental Health
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Answered in 20 minutes by:
3/22/2018
Mental Health Professional: LeahMSWuofm, Clinical Social Worker replied 3 months ago
LeahMSWuofm
LeahMSWuofm, Clinical Social Worker
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 1,107
Experience: 10 years post-MSW experience
Verified
Hi, thank you for writing. I apologize for the robo response earlier. My name is***** you are describing could be considered typical in terms of the fact that finding the right antidepressant for someone is more of an art than a science. Often, there is a lot of trial and error that can go into getting someone on the right medication. The doctor tried two SSRIs (now a 3rd with Lexapro) which is a standard first approach, then tried a non-SSRI antidepressant (Wellbutrin), and when that didn't work, they tried an SNRI (venlafexine). All of these drugs are different enough where trial and error often may be involved in terms of getting to the one that works best for your mom. My rule of thumb when talking to patients is to allow their primary care doctor to try three different antidepressant drugs before referring someone to a psychiatrist for a more specialized approach / opinion. So while it doesn't sound like her current prescribing doctor is super savvy as he is just trying more and more options, it wouldn't be unheard of. With that being said, if depression is an issue for your mother and she is having the following symptoms and continued failure on drugs meant to mitigate the symptoms, then she needs to see a psychiatrist for a more tactful approach. These symptoms things like problematic sleep, problematic appetite, fatigue, anxiety, poor concentration, poor memory, not wanting to do things or not feeling pleasure, agitation, mood variability, affected libido, pervasive feeling down, sad, hopeless, Etc. If she's having symptoms of that variety, then the doctor (seemingly inefficiently) trying to minimize those symptoms with the drugs you mentioned above is sound .
As far as your concern as to whether the drugs you mentioned are safe and healthy, the antidepressant class of medications on the whole is very safe and typically well-tolerated with minimal side effects. They are not addictive. They are safe for both long-term and short-term use. There are no significant concerns about their impact on long-term health. People can use them for a lifetime without significant consequences. Many people can come off of them without difficulty although longer term use does require tapering in order to not have withdrawal symptoms. But again, these are safe medications and are very commonly prescribed. If your mom is having ongoing battle with depression, and explicitly has a combination of the symptoms I mentioned above, then it could be very useful for her to be on some medication. Lexapro 10mg is a good choice if it works for her. And it can take some trial and error and time to find the right medication, although, I would definitely say at this point, she needs a psychiatrist involved.
I hope this helps! And I hope your Mom feels better soon.
Leah
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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
The Pyschatrist is the one prescribing medications.so I am confused about your answer The MD is not involved.. 10 minute session on advice from her therapist. I have read the labels.. Vemlafixine. She been trying theses things for years nothing works when do you stop?
Mental Health Professional: LeahMSWuofm, Clinical Social Worker replied 3 months ago

Sorry to have been confusing. I made a poor assumption that it may not have been a psychiatrist given the fact that he wasn't trying anything especially "novel" considering more traditional attempts weren't working. If she has been trying antidepressant medications for years and nothing helps with her symptoms, then I would recommend getting a different psychiatrist involved, ideally through a major medical center (large health system) who specializes in "treatment resistant depression". They may be able to consider other kinds of approaches to treating her depression (I know you won't like this but ECT is one example). Also, i may reconsider her current therapist as it doesn't sound like a huge amount of progress is being made there, and consider seeking other kinds of therapeutic approaches, like group work.

My other thoughts on this would be if you have considered relocating your mother closer to family who may be more attentive to her needs or considered placement in a more supportive living environment where she will have peer and staff support to help balance out the fact that family time is scarce. Generally finding ways to improve her connectedness to things outside the home should help her including things like volunteer opportunities and involvement in her local senior center. Certainly, isolation, boredom, lack of support, etc. could be primary factors in her not thriving. And like you are eluding to, no medication is magic and takes away all symptoms. If depression is a significant factor for her, then there should be broader consideration for how to get her engaged and active, aside from just medicated.

-Leah

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
The psychartrust says they are all safe to take like you. Have you read the labels and side effects of long term use? I guess I have a problem with your analysis to begin with. I wish to be transferred to another therapist.
Mental Health Professional: LeahMSWuofm, Clinical Social Worker replied 3 months ago

All medication side effect labels sound dire. This is about pros and cons of the medications. If she is clinically depressed, treatment with medication is advised.

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Mental Health Professional: Patience, Therapist replied 3 months ago
Patience
Patience, Therapist
Category: Mental Health
Satisfied Customers: 304
Experience: MA Clinical Psychology; BS Health Sciences
Verified

Hello! I am sorry that your mother is having difficulties. I can understand your concern. Please let me know when you are online, and we can have a discussion to see if we can come up with some strategies.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
helloI can't afford a 59 USD phone call. my mother was horrible on Venlfexline, poor memory, paranoid etc.. is this possible side affects? now that she is off that medication, she is much better! however they started her on lexipro...makes no sense whatsoever how long does it take to get Results from l exipro? I think being off the meds all together. I just want your opinion.
Mental Health Professional: Patience, Therapist replied 3 months ago

I can work with you online; no problem. If we could come up with a time that works for both of us, we can be here to chat together.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
I am free now and after 11 00 AM Eastern time
Customer reply replied 3 months ago
I prefer that we do a question and answer through e-mail this way I have it documented for my own understanding. I don't have a good memory Please ask me questions..
Mental Health Professional: Patience, Therapist replied 3 months ago

Ok. I am hoping that you are still here.

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Mental Health Professional: Patience, Therapist replied 3 months ago

How often do you get to visit with your mother? Does she live far away?

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Mental Health Professional: Patience, Therapist replied 3 months ago

I am shutting down for the night. If you would like to talk at 11:15am EDT, I will be here. Maybe you could answer those questions in the meantime.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
I m here
Customer reply replied 3 months ago
wellI live 3 hours away and try to visit as much as possible. My sister lives around the corner and is too busy bible thumping for her own mother. I would say I visit her at least two times a month... I put in a new kictchen floor
Basically I have lazy siblings who don't give darn. never visit her and whenI Iry to make changes get yelled at. Its almost like an ego thing more so than hello my mother. The solution to the problem is someone there and monitoring - I wrote a letter to my family but never sent it. I can send you that for starters - maybe you can tell me where I am wrong..
Customer reply replied 3 months ago
I would like to know if this chat is prove or public?
Customer reply replied 3 months ago
she loves to garden, she loves to go polka dancing... She begs me to take her all the time because no one near her will.
she is physically fine for an 83 year old. I got her to cut down on her sugar, and eat better - but when I am away things deteriorate - she goes back to sugar all day long - its amazing how she can still function. What makes me sad is that through proper diet and regular visits she would be fine. I thought of moving in there.. My family is negative, lazy, and just don't see it the way I do...
Customer reply replied 3 months ago
I live 4 hours away
Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Here is something I wrote but never sent its brutal, but as you can see I have no relationship with them. we come from a family of 9 children. I get along with all but 3 who happen to be the executors and "know it alls" If you can look this over, let me now where I could be wrong, One in my family does social work of all things - basically, its very simple.. they don't care, and just want to send her to shrinks with medication and call it a day
Customer reply replied 3 months ago
Hello Julie, John, FredI actually wrote this e-mail last year and never bothered to send it. Its somewhat dated. After seeing mother last week, I had enough.I don’t claim to be an expert but I do have common sense and have reason to be concerned for her well-being. I dont have any problems with the rest of the family, as they have not personally attacked meNow I have my own grievances to air as it relates to Mother’s condition.I have established the fact there is no monitoring between Mother and the doctors. Again, I have no problems with using medications whatsoever , but sending her to a therapist and shrink, and pumping her with drugs and calling it a day is unacceptable and negligent.It’s my knowledge that no one attends the ONE HOUR monthly session with Mother.Mother says that you (Julie) goes “when needed” but 99% of the time she is by herself. Don’t you feel someone should be there always? I find this odd… So don't give me this BS that you are in sessions with herShe also has 10 minute sessions with the physiatrist every 1.5 months who takes direction from the therapist who says that if she does not take her meds, won’t see her, (this certainly sounds like normal collusion). As you know, she also threatened our Mother saying, “you will end up in an institution if you don’t take your drugs,” and “I won’t see you if you stop taking your meds.” OK, We should put her in an institution now because their not workingIs this normal for an 82 year old that you claim to be so sick to be handling this alone? Perhaps we can split this duty?It’s clear that she was skipping her meds for a long time either because she had forgotten to take them, was not honest with the therapist, or because they weren’t doing her any good. Who was watching? 1 bottle of Zoloft, only half used? Again, where is the therapist that you like so much? Where is the monitoring on our part? Is Mother honest with the therapist?WHERE IS THE MONITORING?Here is another example of why monitoring is needed:Julie, after you/mother 10 minute session with the physiatrist back in November, Mother walks in the door and has the following questions: ”Mike should I take Zoloft with the new medications?“, “Mike am I allowed to take the advanced memory formula?” and “Mike should I take it in the morning separate from my vitamins? What do you do? Just leave her be until next month? WHY IS SHE ASKING ME THEESE QUESTIONS?WHO HAS BEEN FOLLOWING UP ALL THESE YEARS? NO ONEHave you seen all of the herbs that act as nootropics that directly interfere with her medications? Did you know or care that she was taking St. John’s wort? Can that be taken with current or past medications? According to Thersa, “all is OK.” The prescribing doctor calls it all nonsense and won’t even discuss it with her. I challenge you to look up St John's wort and drug interaction Why cant she discuss drug interations with the therapist?I tried to meet with the physiatrist during her 10 minute psychiatric session time. I wanted to discuss drug interactions and Mother’s current side-effects etc. NO ONE is doing it. I was literally 5 minutes late and I got told “tell your son he can catch us next time.” Hence forth I went with Mother to Giant Eagle to see if she can take XYZ with current medication. The pharmacist said no, then I went to another pharma they said yes. It gets interesting…I did not believe the first one, so we went to another CVS and found later it was OK to take with Venlafaxine her current medication.And you want her to do this on her own?The doctor dismisses anything related to natural health and calls it all “nonsense.” I am NOT talking about herbs, just in general. Mother cannot openly discuss anything with her physiatrist, and feels uncomfortable to do so,Is that who we want our Mother visiting on her OWN? Is this the right doctor?SIDE EFFECTS: Mother does not discuss side effects with the doctor. They tell her it’s all safe...this is not true. Some side-effects such as ringing of the ears, night sweats, cramps etc. should be reported to the doctor ASAP as per drug label. They are NOT. I ask Mother, did you discuss this with the doctor? NO. AGAIN, WHAT IS THIS? UPDATEHow do we know the “mental sickness” is not IN part related to the drugs….for example, check MEMORY LOSS. There is a risk/reward equation here and no one is talking about it.Another example, Mother’s therapist, Theresa, says she can take all natural stuff along with her meds. Really? I read directly from the manufactures website and talked to another Physiatrist in Columbus who does not recommend taking those supplements with current medications.WHERE IS THE MONITROING?I asked Mother how she is doing. I quote “I went to the therapist and she says I am doing better because she got me to talk about all our past Christmas family gatherings,” and I quote mom “But I am not better my OCD is ver
Mental Health Professional: Patience, Therapist replied 3 months ago

Hello again! Your letter does a great job of pinpointing the issues and concerns. I agree with your decision not to send the letter. I am sure you have already discussed these things with them more than once to no avail. Unfortunately, you cannot dictate the actions of others. What you can do is figure what your next steps to help your mom should be. You seem pretty knowledgeable and caring. What can you do to make a positive difference in this situation?

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
no I have not discussed with them. I want some information as it relates to drugs and their side affects. they think she is just sick.. everyone says they are safe.. they sent a scathing letter to me to let things be I want a second opinion from larger institution that is not in it for the money
Customer reply replied 3 months ago
i need some information on drugs side affects. with drugs alone are not the answer
Customer reply replied 3 months ago
if you can transfer me to a prescribing doctor that would be best
Mental Health Professional: Patience, Therapist replied 3 months ago

By the way, what is your first name? That will help me connect with you. I really think we need to have a real time conversation to get to a resolution here. When will you be available to talk online and what is your time zone? Thanks.

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Customer reply replied 3 months ago
I wish to be transferred to a professional who hasn answer the following questions.
taking drugs for 10 + years. what effect does it have on the elderly? phys icslly ? when is it time to say they don't work? how safe is it for her to get off drigs?.
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