Peter Forster  
Male, 58
San Francisco, CA

Specialties: Bipolar, Major Depression, Dysthymia

Interests: Bipolar Disorder, Depression
Gateway Psychiatric Services
San Francisco, CA
My Posts
Apr 20, 2012 in the Mood Disorders Expert Forum - 1
Thanks for your email. I think that mood charting is a great idea. I don't think that it is necessarily an either/or (mood charting or taking medication), you could get started mood charting and then if things are not going well you could take medication and keep mood charting (in other words mood charting will help you and your psychiatrist make sense o...
Apr 13, 2012 in the Mood Disorders Expert Forum - 1
The risk is with withdrawal or discontinuation. Many of the symptoms you describe could be anxiety. And in terms of treatment having anxiety caused by neurological symptoms is treated the same as having anxiety caused by other things, or with no cause at all. I wonder if you might want to consider seeing a different doctor. You need to feel that you h...
Apr 10, 2012 in the Mood Disorders Expert Forum - 1
Thank you for your message. You have had quite a remarkable life and faced many challenges. As you point out, you have had this before and it seems to go away. I am pretty confident that it will go away again. But the question is what is causing this state of confusing and disturbing thoughts and emotions? There are a number of possibilities. I am pretty...
Apr 05, 2012 in the Mood Disorders Expert Forum - 4
Thanks for your post. I think it is a good idea to get an assessment. It sounds as though mood and anxiety symptoms have had quite an impact on your life already. If you have a primary care doctor, one good starting place would be talking to him or her and getting a referral. You want to go see a good psychologist or psychiatrist. You want to find s...
Apr 02, 2012 in the Mood Disorders Expert Forum - 1
One problem with many natural supplements is that there is no real quality control. Another problem is that many kinds of tests that are done on medications before they are approved (for instance, what the effects of the medicine is on the liver's ability to metabolize other medications) are usually not done on supplements. The most reliable source of in...
Apr 02, 2012 in the Mood Disorders Expert Forum - 4
Some amount of uncertainty is inevitable in medicine, and that can be very hard to deal with. One way that doctors deal with this is by asking themselves the question, what are the things that I might be doing that could make a big difference in the outcome... It is a bad thing to miss a diagnosis that might make a big difference in the health of a patient ...
Apr 01, 2012 in the Mood Disorders Expert Forum - 3
Congratulations on the changes that you made. Clearly you have the ability to channel your energy and intensity in ways that are very positive. Several questions came to mind as I read your post - Is this a dip in energy and alertness (which is normal for everyone in the early afternoon) that is then triggering negative thoughts... perhaps if you just...
Mar 31, 2012 in the Mood Disorders Expert Forum - 4
Thank you for writing. I hope that you will find some support and help on these forums. It is very hard to feel alone with this kind of anxiety. Over the years I have found that people worry the most about illness and death when they are really unhappy in their current lives. And that focusing on what you can do about that unhappiness is often the best wa...
Mar 29, 2012 in the Mood Disorders Expert Forum - 2
Generally taking a medicine to be comfortable with therapy doesn't seem like an ideal approach. But I suppose there might be circumstances where it would be worth considering... don't know. As for three months. That seems like a good amount of time to commit to. You should be able to get a sense of the results by then. When folks ask me if they h...
Mar 27, 2012 in the Mood Disorders Expert Forum - 2
There are limitations to all of the medications that we have to treat anxiety. I am going to assume that the problem you have is what is called generalized anxiety (as opposed to panic disorder, or obsessive compulsive disorder or posttraumatic stress disorder). Broadly these are the options - 1. Benzodiazepines like lorazepam (Ativan), diazepam (Va...