Q: Pdoc Added
Zuclopenthixol to Help w/Hyperactivity
Dear Dr. Phelps,
I just had to write you to tell you THANK-YOU!!!
I have had severe depression since I was 19 to present.(55yo) I was
diagnosed 3years ago with bi-polar, rapid cycling.
I was particularly happy to see your section explaining anxiety as
possible hypo-mania! I have suffered with some form of this including the rage,
periods of extreme insomnia, and all the rest. About all I can say that the only
symptom I have NOT had is the full-blown mania with psychosis. Everything else I
I am currently hypo-manic, and have been since Christmas. I have
been concerned that it would keep escalating, resulting in disaster. My
psychiatrist has now added zuclopenthixol, to help with this hyper activity and
feeling almost TOO, TOO FANTASTIC!!! I feel like I am on speed.
I realize you must be very busy, but if you may step in and help me
I would be extremely thankful! I feel as if at times I am on a tight-rope and
want to stay as "normal" as possible!
I am an American living in Germany, married with 8yo twin sons.
I hope to hear from you soon. Any help is help!
Dear Georgia --
It sounds like you are looking for some additional ideas on how
to slow down your hyperactivity. Zuclopenthixol is a medication approach to this
problem. I can't make any medication recommendations, but I will show you some
interesting information about using changes in your light exposure that might
potentially be of some value (I can offer this because it is not a prescription
for action, but rather just information that you might be able to use on your
own without taking any significant risk). It's also either free or cheap
depending on how you look at it.
You're probably familiar with the idea of "light therapy", used
as an antidepressant in seasonal mood changes. We know that antidepressants can
sometimes trigger manic symptoms. So one might ask, might the opposite of light
have the opposite effect? In other words, if light can be an antidepressant, is
it possible that darkness can be a mood stabilizer?
Unfortunately -- in part because darkness is free -- there has
been very little research done on this idea. But there are a couple of very
suggestive case reports, and a small study treating mania with darkness. These
are described in my essay on
dark therapy. At the bottom of that
essay you will find a link to a bigger-picture consideration of the roles of
light and darkness in bipolar treatment.
I hope that something in there may be of use to you. If so,
share it with your German psychiatrist!
Published May, 2008