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My lovely mum is having a mental health crisis - Psychiatrist has removed her from all her meds

(45 Posts)
Pantone363 Tue 26-Jan-16 21:32:15

She's suffered for years with bipolar disorder, borderline personality disorder, psychotic episodes and anxiety/depression.

For six years she's taken Sertraline, Lamotragine and Olanzapine. The last two years she's been very stable. No psychosis, no huge crisis.

New psychiatrist 6 months ago. She usually sees him once every 3 months. Five weeks ago he took her off all of her meds COLD TURKEY shock. He said she shouldn't have been on them that long and the government is trying to cut back on prescribing those scripts and that there is a stroke risk from the Lamotragine after taking it for years. The only script she now has is Trazodone once a day.

She's in an awful way, truly awful. She begged him today to put her back on them but he said no and that she needed to give the Trazodone some time to work. She has a support worker who goes with her to appts and she confirmed what my DM was saying. She also has a meeting with the benefits people about going back to work. Psychiatrist said to her 'lots of people with your problems work, don't try lying to them or they will know'

DM now in an utter state. I'm trying to help but not sure what to do. Surely taking her off all her meds at once can't be a good idea?

Owllady Tue 26-Jan-16 21:35:23

I don't have much experience of this, but surely she shouldn't have been taken of her medicine cold turkey and immediately put on something else has she spoke to a pharmacist at all? Surely if you have a complex mental illness and have been on drugs long term, this is not sensible in any sense if the word or world?

TheGreatSnafu Tue 26-Jan-16 21:35:51

Absolutely horrific practice. Can you help her request a different psychiatrist and meanwhile return to the GP and request temporary reinstatement of previous meds until her case is reviewed by the 2nd psychiatrist.

I'm so sorry she is going through this.

Owllady Tue 26-Jan-16 21:37:30

Going to work should be a goal, not a requirement. If she's unwell and needs help to return to work that's a goal, but you are talking about someone who hasn't been able to work, withdrawal of meds, with a support worker
Your mum sad flowers

Pipestheghost Tue 26-Jan-16 21:42:29

That's is shocking, your poor mum. Can she see her GP instead? I've never heard of meds being stopped so suddenly, usual practice is to reduce slowly whilst being reviewed on a regular basis.

Pantone363 Tue 26-Jan-16 21:48:36

Her anxieties seem to have focused on going back to work because she's been called in by the benefits people to be assessed. She has a support worker for everything, forms, meds. The council look after her money as she is financially vulnerable when she is manic etc. I can't possibly think of one job she could hold down.

I'm guessing the Pyschiatrist has heard her worries about going back to work and interpreted it as malingering angry

I've just skyped her and she is physically shaking. I've told her to go to the GP first thing and ask for her meds back and another psychiatrist. This new one sounds awful. The support worker said he barely even looked up from his notes when she was there. Appt over in 10 minutes. Her previous one spent over an hr talking with her.

I'm so fucking angry right now. She was in a really good place. I know it sounds stupid but she had just taught herself to ride a bike and was getting out and about for rides everyday, for her this is a miracle! Now she's right back to where she was five years ago.

Thanks for all the help

Owllady Tue 26-Jan-16 22:02:05

Do you think she needs intervention?
This doesn't sound right panetone
Does she need the crisis team (or whoever is in between) to intervene?
This doesn't sound right. Your poor mum
GP a good call though, are they good?

Muddledupme Tue 26-Jan-16 22:56:45

What area of the country do you live in as this sounds familiar to my local cmht. They have an anti medication psychiatrist who does this routinely

stargirl1701 Tue 26-Jan-16 23:14:42

That's just appalling. My aunt went through this and tragically killed herself. It simply shouldn't be possible for one doctor to wield such power.

NanaNina Wed 27-Jan-16 01:40:50

This is shocking. Ads need to be stopped very gradually - assume the other 2 are anti psychotics? The problem with asking the GP to re-instate the script is that a GP is not going to go against a psychiatrist. This support worker - is she a CPN? If so she might be able to talk to another psychiatrist. I know mine would if anything like that happened.

The best way to complain about a psychiatrist is through the Care Quality Commission (CQC) Google the hospital Trust and you should get the CQC details for that trust. They oversee all medical practice. In the outpatient clinic I go to see a psychiatrist every month, there is a big notice from the CQC saying "Tell us what you think" but you need to move quickly as it sounds dangerous to me to just stop all the meds.

And that was a very crass comment about your mom and whether she's fit for work. Shocking. If you can't find details of the CQC on Google contact the medical secretaries in the out patient clinic and they will be able to give you the details.

Broken1Girl Wed 27-Jan-16 01:57:21

That is disgusting.
flowers to you and her.
I would complain to the CMHT manager first of all. You can also contact PALS.
If this gets no joy there might be MH advocacy available locally.
(Obviously If she becomes a risk to herself take her/ get her to go to A&E, if she won't go, call 999).

DecaffCoffeeAndRollupsPlease Wed 27-Jan-16 02:53:16

Shocking. I take sertraline and get told off for missing doses. This must be a terrible time for your mum, and challenging for you too. I hope some of the advice in this thread helps. I would echo trying to see another psychiatrist asap, she's entitled to a second opinion.

DesertOrDessert Wed 27-Jan-16 04:53:05

Can your Mum cope til a GP appointment can be made? Or does she need the Crisis team before then?
I would say she needs a sympathetic medical professional ASAP who can guide her on the best way to get progress from here. I was on minimum setraline, and was advised to take 2-3 weeks to come off them. She then needs a new physiatrist.

If you want a plus side, get the works and benefits people to see her before she is reestablished.

And then if your feeling strong enough, complain about the psychiatrist. To do that on the second meeting of someone is appalling.


notonyurjellybellynelly Wed 27-Jan-16 05:01:09

My God, thats horrific.

My son is on quite a cocktail of these type of meds and when altering them the rule of thumb is alter one med at a time and always slowly.

Im sorry this has happened to your mum.

shiteforbrains Wed 27-Jan-16 05:19:27

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Pantone363 Wed 27-Jan-16 08:17:32

Thank you all. My DM is the Isle of Wight and I'm Essex so it's difficult to physically be with her but I'm skping all day to check up.

She's spoken to the crisis team four times in the last few days. They know she's feeling very unwell and she has a direct line to call them on if she feels suicidal.

The support worker is somebody who helps her with all admin/appts/medications/finances. Not sure if CPN or not? DM is going to the GP today to see if they will reinstate meds.

Sorry if you don't think it 'rings true'. It is what it is. She gets her meds ready made up in a blister pack from the pharmacy. I've seen them over Skype and spoken to the support worker. They've all been removed and replace with the Trazadone. I'm a long standing poster and not particularly inclined to lie about my DM. I'm sure she could be lying but the CPN/support worker isn't.

gamerchick Wed 27-Jan-16 08:30:15

I can't see any psychiatrist behaving in this way though I am afraid

Oh can't you? Look on the bright side, at least you can be prepared if it happens to you.

Unfortunately I don't know what to suggest other that go to the GP, I've locked horns with a head doctor myself so can totally believe he's done this.

Why on earth remove someone's meds when they're stable? These illnesses are so hard to get under control in the first place. Oh the government, silly me.

Penfold007 Wed 27-Jan-16 08:38:02

Professionally I have experience of MH services on the IOW they are virtually none existent. Psychiatrist acting not in patient's best interest is, sadly, all too believeable.

Laquila Wed 27-Jan-16 08:42:48

I feel really really sorry for both of you. If it's not a daft question, who allocates the psychiatrist, as if we're? I definitely think you need to focus on getting a new one or at least complaining about him, rather than getting him to reinstate her dose - it doesn't sound like he's a good fit at all. At least you have the back-up evidence from her support worker, when it comes to complaining. I hope you find a solution soon.

Laquila Wed 27-Jan-16 08:43:15

*as if we're = as it were

shiteforbrains Wed 27-Jan-16 10:56:56

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

Pantone363 Wed 27-Jan-16 11:00:15

penfold, yes. They sound awful. These are the same people who put her in a taxi from Sevenacres (the MH inpatient hospital) and sent her home in the middle of a depersonalisation episode. She had no idea who or where she was. The taxi driver took her to her old address (she didn't remember she had moved) and left her there at 8pm. She was found by the police walking around in the pouring rain an 2am. No idea where or who she was. Taken back to sevenacres and then discharged the same fucking day. Disgusting treatment.

I can't get her on the phone at the moment, trying not to panic! I'm sure she's just overslept as she was so wired yesterday.

BishopBrennansArse Wed 27-Jan-16 11:01:38

Thing is shite (sorry just sounds awful, that) the support worker who was at the appointment is supporting what the OP's DM is saying.

Is there any way she can ask for a second opinion in Pompey? Would she be able to make the trip if her support worker went with her?

Pantone363 Wed 27-Jan-16 11:02:24

Shite, I'm sorry, I did realise after I posted that that might be what you meant. No harm done! And yes she does get confused that's why I asked her to show me her meds over Skype. The pharmacy prepare them for her so she doesn't get messed up.

shiteforbrains Wed 27-Jan-16 11:05:06

Message withdrawn at poster's request.

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