Voices Aren't Affected by the Meds
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Q:  Voices Aren't Affected by the Meds

my son, who is 26, was diagnosed with schioaffective disorder 2 years ago.  since then he has shown great improvement and is what i would consider "normal" except for one thing:  he still has auditory hallucinations every day and night.  Other than that, he takes classes at the local university, spends time with family, buys groceries and clothes, etc.  We didnt see improvement for a year after beginning medications so I switched doctors and this one found he was extremely hypothyroid.  He started him on Synthroid and he has gradually improved since.  His thyroid tests are still in the lowest range of normal and his doc feels he will continue to improve as   his thyroid function improves.  But, unfortunatly the voices arent affected at all.  What do you think of this and are there any people who improve in every way except with auditory hallucinations?  He is on 2000 Depakote, 15 Abilify, 20 Celexa and .150 Synthroid.  Thanks for your help...sandy 


Dear Sandy -- 
Yes, unfortunately I have had several patients myself where everything's basically treated except the voices, by standard treatments.  For most of them it hasn't been worth the side-effect price to get the voices completely gone, compared to the much lower doses sufficient to control everything else.  Periodically it might be worth it to try again for 100% symptom control using newer agents -- but he's certainly on some new stuff now so that would be a while.  However, other doctors may well see more patients like this and have a different strategy to recommend.  There's an interesting study using
rTMS for voices, but that technique is not really clinically available yet and may not really work out because of some other complex factors (i.e. I wouldn't go off hunting it or waiting for it; just so you know about it for now). 

Dr. Phelps

Published April, 2004


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