How to tell if its Schizodaffective Disorder or Somethig else
I am new here but I will post. I am posting this becasue I am undiagnosed but do have a regular psychiartrist that I see.
General: I am 27 female right now and taking 5mg of abilify daily....I am healthy, no kids, no husband, great supporting family to help me with my mental issues =).
Background: I noticed something was wrong with me when I was 21 (2002). Great stress was around me with school and parents divorce. I suffered a mental and emotioanl breakdown and had to be hospitalized. I remember right before this I was under a lot of stress and had great depression that continued to deepen and anxiety as well. I had some sort of meltdown because of all this and things have not been the same since. I had great suspicion at the time that people were against me and that they were talking about me behind my back. I also remember being ultra sensitive and thinking people online were plotting against me. It was weird.
I went into the hospital becasue I was majorily depressed, and could not get out of bed. The whole time I kept thinking that someone was after me...i.e. Michael Jackson, and various other people. It was really strange since I never met him or any other celebrity for that matter. I was given porzac for the depression as well as advan(sp) for the anxiety which I stopped taking. I heard a voice but was not completely honest with my doctor at the time becaue I didnt know what was going on. I remember I had parnoia and strong auditory hallucinations. I was suicidal, and had to be in placed in a crisis house for 2 weeks.
Years later after being untreated, I had another episode, as I call them. This time similar but different in nature. Instead of feeling down with major depression, I had an outbreak of psychosis that was sort of paranoia mixed with mania. This was in 2006. I thought I could do anything for about a whole day! I was going to sing, dance and Michael Jackson was going to teach me how. Again it was brought on by stress from school. I thouht I was someone else and that the mafia was after me. I also thought that my phone was tapped and that people wer plotting against me. I could not sleep this time, and was full of energy. I was also sure I was pregrant, but was still a virgin at the time so it was impossible. I also thought I was going to give birth to some special child and that I was mother theresa.
I went into the hospital and they put me on risperdal for all this. I have since seen a psychiatrist but they do not know what it is still. Is is schizoid affective disorder with pschoisis? Is it with major depresion? With bipolar? Its a strange combination. I was given schizoidaffective disorder but I am not happy with it. This was back home in America, I am in the U.K now. They are reviewing my charts to get a better handle on it. I
I am doing okay, but I still have a very flat affect. I tend to be unemotional, withdrawn, with no sexual intimacy. I am not ugly and I have dont well for myself considering the circumstances. I have held jobs, I have also graduated from college with a degree in Psychology (go figure) and I am working on my MBA, I am high functioning whatever I am, but its hard nevertheless.
Any insight as to what went wrong and why? My current problem is that I always feel flat, always feel depressed to some extent. The depression never lifted completely, but the other symptons have been taken care of with Abilify. I do well on it, with the exception of weight gain of about 50lbs since my first episode. I also have some anxiety which I am going to see my doc next month and tell her.
Schizoaffective disorder is schizophrenia with a mood disorder. The person has psychotic thoughts all the time. Bipolar with psychotic features is similar but the person only experiences psychosis during moodswings. Not being able to relate to people are the negative symptoms of schizophrenia. That is typical. You might want to ask about a working mood stabilizer in addition to Abilify (which is an antipsychotic) such as Lamictal. I have made a full recovery from schizoaffective disorder with the antipsychotic agent in Phase II FDA study glycine, a glutamate antagonist, a new form of antipsychotic that has a more favorable recovery rate and long term side effect profile. My case study will be published in a psychiatric journal. In the meantime for the official study google "Dr. Javitt, glycine". Some providers may start to use it as an adjunct (in addition) to current antipsychotics as I am the first to recover from it by itself. I will make the results available when they are published but you could ask your psychiatrist about it in the meantime as in the study it showed good effectiveness on negative and cognitive symptoms in particular.
Hmmm...I am not a doctor, but taking into my Psych degree and what you just said, I would have to say that I have schizoaffective disorder. With depression being the mood disorder. If I dont take my meds, (ablify) I have pyschosis all the time. Its true. I remember one time I did not want to take my meds becasue I was just fed up with eveything and I had psychosis. I would probably had it all the time, if it were not for the meds. I do know that I need to consult my doctor and cant self-diagnois but thats what it sounds like to me.
ILadvocate, thats so great that you were able to recover from schizoaffective disorder. That is such an inspiration to me and gives me a lot of hope. Do you mean that you still take medication for it, or what? Do you mean you dont have a that flat affect anymore. I am just curious as to your case.
No I like everyone else will always need medication. The phase II experimental antipsychotic glycine that I take is functioning as a working antipsychotic in me. It has eliminated flat affect and other negative symptoms of schizophrenia, cognitive symptoms and all forms of psychosis as well. This is clinically confirmed. Basically it has put the schizophrenia in remmission. Of course I need a working mood stabilizer as well. And I am on a fair amount of treatment for advanced tardive dyskinesia and what they are clinically identifying as the criteria "tardive psychosis" (this will be incorporated in the case study as well). I was started on the glycine because I had tardive dyskinesia and could not tolerate Clozaril which is the only currently available medication that will not cause/worsen it. Glycine does not cause tardive dyskinesia or diabetes unlike any known antipsychotic and has a far greater recovery rate. The medications that I take for tardive dyskinesia would not be of help for you except for Zofran which I take and is an approved medication but used off label as an adjunct anti-psychotic for schizophrenia. I've put the information about this in my journal entries and have been allowed by my provider to do two Wikipedia entries as well. When the case study on me is published it will clinically valid information and will be incorporated into there.
Definitely sounds like schizophrenia and what I have seen working in an out-patient mental health facility. With schizophrenia the person can be okay with medication for a period of time and then cycle again. The psychiatrists I worked for called it cycling; the patient goes in a circle with being better, than just okay, and then having an psychotic episode like you talked about. Lots of the patients would ask if they were ever going to get better and still there is not a medication on the market that I am aware of that will make everything okay all of the time without the cycling. You have to enjoy the days that you are feeling well and make the best out of them. Has the doctor said anything about Vitamin B stress tabs to help deal with the anxiety this causes? Doctors prescribe Bendryl a lot for sleep which helps slow the mind down. Hope you are feeling better now. You may want to see a psychologist on a regular basis to help you deal with this.
My son is 19 years old, he could not finish High School, he has not been able to do anything consistently.He abused marijuana and alcohol..he ended up with no friends because of the events that happened when he was drunk. Strangely while he was taking Lithium and still drinking and smoking never had any incident of violent outbursts but as soon he was hospitalized and doing well for 4 weeks and get out of hospital and went out drinking he had the most terrible rage. I just wonder if he is Schizoafective or bipolar? He is very inteligent but never able to concentrate and was diagnosed with ADD at the age of 8. I was reading what you wrote about glycine treatment and I just wonder if this medication will help him. Is it part of the Schizoaffective disorder that he sleeps through the day and he stays on the internet researching all night? We argue a lot about this, no motivation to do any training, he believes he cant function in this society, he feels helpless but other times he just does not care at all, he feel with a lot of guilt, even hit a friend over a religious discussion and obviouly has not friends. He always think about what meaningless is this life, sometimes he feels like socializing but start ringing people who he has not talk to for a long time and realize that they avoid him. As a mother I am suffering a lot this situation because I know he needs people around him. He has not have a girlfriend and is very shy and has a lot of complex about his body eventhough he is handsome. All this research he does is about aliens and cosmos and etc...he becomes very obsessed but he told me that all the knowledge he has is not syptom of psicosis but a subject that he loves. What is your opinion..is he bipolar or Schizoaffective?
Some of what you describe could be the negative symptoms of schizoaffective disorder (such as avoiding people) and positive symptoms (not as in good but things that are there but shouldn't be such as psychosis, hallucinations and magical thinking) but a psychiatrist would have to provide a diagnosis first. Also they would have to make sure he is not using drugs or alcohol as of this time. There are dual recovery programs for people with a psychiatric disability and a substance abuse issue. That would be worthwhile for him regardless. As for antipsychotics is he on an antipsychotic now or ever been on one? The antipsychotics that are in use as of now and FDA approved can treat those kind of symptoms. Glycine is still in Phase II FDA study and myself aside has shown specific benefit only on negative and cognitive symptoms. I am not sure if a psychopharmocologist would consider its use as an adjunct agent to standard antipsychotics (as is done in the Phase II FDA study, I am the first person to take it clinically supervised as a primary antipsychotic) but the first step is to see if currently available treatment works and how he responds to it and tolerates it and definitely his psychiatrist needs to be updated as regards any symptoms he has that may potentially be psychotic so they could within their discretion update his diagnosis and treatment.
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