Lamictal screws up handwriting and typing?

So I went to the meds doc yesterday and rattled off a list of side effects – balance, coordination, nausea, pimples all over my head. “I have no problem about these, after the problems with Lexapro,” I told him. Then I flippantly tossed out another “side effect” almost as a joke – difficulty typing and writing longhand. But he countered, “No, others have reported that too.”

I am a touch typist – I am at the computer a lot. I write longhand quickly. Fine motor control. But in the last few weeks on Lamictal, it seems like I have to keep correcting my typing. I miss letters or reverse letters. Or mes sup the spacin gbetween lettesr.

It is annoying because it screws up my train of thought to go back and correct them. The artist and creator in me wants to keep typing to capture the thought, and the engineer cannot STAND to see those little red squiggly lines underneath misspelled words, and makes us go back and correct them.

And it is happening a LOT MORE lately.

I was writing out a check to the meds doc and I left letters out of his name and also in spelling out the amount of the fee. I said, “Here’s another interesting side effect – I am missing letters when I write and it just feels funny to write. Holding the pen feels strange. But I am sure it is unrelated to anything.”

“No,” he told me. “Others have reported the same thing to me.”

??? You are kidding me! A side effect is missing letters while writing and typing? Doesn’t that sound bizarre!?!

I mentioned this in an email to my mom. She replied, “And you know something, I have noted that your e-mails are a bit sloppier – a letter missing once in a while. Very interesting. I wondered about it because you are usually so precise. ”

But do you remember that “Power of the Human Brain” thing? It shouldn’t matter if I do that because you will still be able to read my posts. (I looked for a legitimate reference for this but there appears to be none other than random blogs like this one. But it is rather ubiquitous.)

if yuo can raed tihs, you hvae a sgtrane mnid, too.
Can you raed tihs? Olny 55 plepoe out of 100 can.

i cdnuolt blveiee taht I cluod aulaclty uesdnatnrd waht I was rdanieg. The phaonmneal pweor of the hmuan mnid, aoccdrnig to a rscheearch at Cmabrigde Uinervtisy, it dseno’t mtaetr in waht oerdr the ltteres in a wrod are, the olny iproamtnt tihng is taht the frsit and lsat ltteer be in the rghit pclae. The rset can be a taotl mses and you can sitll raed it whotuit a pboerlm. Tihs is bcuseae the huamn mnid deos not raed ervey lteter by istlef, but the wrod as a wlohe. Azanmig huh? yaeh and I awlyas tghuhot slpeling was ipmorantt! if you can raed tihs forwrad it.

But I digress. (Or, “But I digest” as my best friend says…)

So this is all the push I needed to go trolling on the internet for information about this mysteriously strange side effect. Imagine my surprise when I saw it reported elsewhere!

References for this strange side effect

I found nothing on “official” websites. However, several forums writers at askpatient.com and copingwithepilepsy.com reported the same thing.

“I have experienced trouble typing, finding the right words and stumbling over my words in conversation…and lots of trouble with handwriting–like leaving out letters, scrambled letters, and basically trouble writing at all.”

“I feel like the “Village Idiot,” experiencing problems with writing, reading and speaking. … letters become transposed or a letter disappears. When I read, I don’t see a word correctly and completely misinterpret the meaning of the sentence. In speaking, I grasp for words and choose the wrong ones.”

“Trouble when typing, mixing up the letters, mixing up words when talking.”

“Definite problems with inversion of numbers and letters. My hands always seem to be one key over to far!”

“Spelling and typing are harder, I mix up letters and whatnot.”

“I’m normally a fast typist, but now I constantly reach for wrong letters. It’s as if my brain can’t control where my fingers are going on the keyboard….can’t seem to get the right word out my memory bank.”

“This isn’t dyslexia; I’m not transposing letters, but leaving letters out, or having trouble spelling.”

“Difficulty in completing letters in words when writing, many typos, difficulty in finding correct words to say to complete sentences.”

Now, this particular side effect may be due to a broader category of side effects of lack of coordination, tremor, and clumsiness.

“Tremor(shaking) and painful and tense feeling in my right hand, which makes certain things such as writing and holding a glass difficult & uncomfortable, due to shaking of hand.”

Same side effect with other drugs

During my search, I also found other drugs with the same crappy handwriting and typing side effects. One is Topamax which is prescribed for migraines.

“(!!!)Wow 18 hours later and I can still hardly type! Each word comes out wrong letters all jumbled – it’s a challenge typing dyslexic!”

Because the action of Topamax is unknown but proposed to calm excitable nerve cells, it may be similar to Lamictal which modulates sodium channels to modulate nerve cell communications (see post Lamictal – a drug for DID?)

Interestingly, researchers have explored changes in handwriting with different psychotropic drugs to detect small changes in motor control that are caused by side effects of the drug: Quantitative measurement of handwriting in the assessment of drug-induced parkinsonism.

So all of this might be related. On another note – several of the forum writers above mention the concept of dyslexia. Since dyslexia is thought to be caused by language centers in the brain and problems with left-right brain communication, could a drug like Lamictal that affects neural condition simulate such a condition?

Hey, it’s a REALLY big stretch, but who knows. After all, this drug causes me to reverse letters and screw up words!

Humorous Closing

Of course when I search the internet, I usually find something interesting but unrelated. When I used the search term, “Lamictal side effects handwriting”, I was amused to see references to doctors and their illegible handwriting in sound-alike drug names (Lamictal vs Lamisil lamivudine, Ludiomil labetalol, and Lomotil). Of course the topic of the post was NOT amusing, namely, deaths caused by dispensing the wrong drug. One hospital even offered a handwriting course targeted to doctors identified by nurses as those with the worse handwriting.

PS

Yes, this post was difficult to write. I am sure it took longer than normal. And I had 7 typos in this paragraph. Gak.

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43 Comments»

  Tigerweave wrote @

At one of our local pubs that does a really yummy lunch, some of their disposable placemats had pretty much the same thing as your muddled up writing example. (others had some funny jokes etc). It started off something like “No, you hnvsa’t been Dkinring taht mcuh.”
Or something like that anyway. They didn’t say only 55 % could read it. They just said anyone could.

🙂

  emilylonelygirl wrote @

Tigerweave

Well of COURSE everyone can read the one in your pub -it is about drinking when people HAVE been drinking! 🙂 Just like anyone drunk can completely understand your speech while those who are straight have absolutely no clue about what you are saying!

L

  donra wrote @

wow, you just blew mw away! I thought I was imagining it but I went on Lamictal and Topamax at about the same time and really felt stupid. Talking was the worst because I would forget a word in the middlw of a sentence, something as easy as “tree” and have to describe what I meant because the word just wouldn’t come back to me. It gradually got better and I haven’t noticed it in a long time, so there is hope! My typing was slower, but never great anyway, but writing was definately affected. My Doc. didn’t believe me.

  donra wrote @

A funny side note to that is the fact that I’m a bartender. I wonder if anyone even noticed when I said sometingwrong!?

  emilylonelygirl wrote @

Donra

Yeh, I was surprised as well, and didn’t even consider it a side effect anyway. I was on my way out of my session when I tossed off that comment and was shocked my doc agreed! So tell your doctor that there is a lot of anecdotal evidence out there!

Em

  Andrew Mast wrote @

I’ve experienced the same problem and I know for a fact that it’s a new behavior. My friend recently emailed me with a general concern that went something like this, “I can’t understand what you just wrote. Dude, lately your writing has gotten sloppy. You used to be so meticulous and precise with spelling and grammar. Are you ok? I’m concerned.”

I explained to him that I think it’s the Lacmital. HAHA, look how I spelled it! It’s more than coincidence. I’m frustrated but OK with it. I’m taking 600mg/day of Lamictal for epilepsy BTW.

  emilylonelygirl wrote @

Hi Andrew

Boy, it seems like there is a LOT of anecdotal evidence that has NOT made it to the package insert!

What your friend said to you is EXACTLY what my mom said to me! Tell him to read this post! Then he won’t be worried – many other people have the same thing and we are “ok”. (BTW – he sounds like a good friend.)

600 mg – wow, I am on 200 mg. But you are taking for a completely different reason than I am. So I can’t comment at ALL about your dose – just that maybe your writing is THAT MUCH MORE screwed up than mine!

Thanks for stopping by,
Emily

  Jackie wrote @

OMGoshhhh I am so pleased to hear we are not truly loosing it with this whole typing/handwriting thing. I mean, we’re not happy about it, but an explaination is always nice. (It’s nice as in similar to finding a new outfit in my closet and finding the receipt where we bought it.)

I was screaming to the laptop screen “YES”, “YES”, over and over when reading all ya’ll’s experiences with this.

  emilylonelygirl wrote @

J

Funny thing about the outfits…I never find in my closet something I don’t remember buying. But I DO see clothing/shoes that I REMEMBER buying, but thinking later, “What ever possessed you to buy this?”

And now I know the REAL question should have been, “WHO ever possessed you to buy this?
🙂

  David wrote @

I’m so glad I found your post online it’s such a relief. I have been on Lamictal for 6 months and recently I’ve started having bizarre mental defecits. I’m not sure if it’s because I switched my dose to the morning but all of a sudden my vision is messed up, my short-term memory is blown, and, WORST of all I can’t read or write or type the way I used to. I’ve always been a very verbal and language oriented person: read well, I’m an actor and have always been able to memorize lines easily (I memorized an 80 minute solo monologue in two weeks easily), I’ve always been a very fast typer as well, I got one of the highest WPM when I applied for a temp agency last Spring. Well, lately all that’s changed: I can’t read, it’s like I’m not connecting the letters properly or the letters get mixed up somewhere between when my eyes and my mind (I’m struggling to find the words to explain this experience when normally I’d just bang out the description no problem). The difficulty reading is especially disturbing: words from the line below will jump up to the above line and I’ll get confused and have to read the sentence over again. I’VE NEVER HAD THIS PROBLEM IN MY LIFE. I feel like I’m going insane and it’s really scary.

I’ve begun reducing my dose of Lamictal with my doctors permission. I’m hoping to be off of it in a few weeks. I have a show coming up and have lines to learn.

  Emily’s Camigwen wrote @

Hi David

YES – I experienced the same freaky things, which caused my research. You are completely not alone and certainly not making things up. My vision is a problem too – I have to go get fitted for new glasses, and this makes me unsure what to di!

It frustrates me that I have always been able to have the right word on my tongue, and now I can see the word in my mind and not say it for a few seconds. I know what is happening now and trying to compensate, but this is new for me.

An actor – cool! Yes, memorization is going to be hard. However, I have a part of me (DID) that does that well, so that is one good reason for alters, but it is still hard. Do you mind saying where you perform – TV? Stage? That is wonderful!

Regarding dose reduction – I did about a month ago for other side effects (speech and reversed words, balance) and found that my typing came back almost to normal. I had been at 200mg and went back to 150mg. It helps the side effects pretty well (still word and balance problems) but helps with typing.

YOU ARE NOT INSANE!!!!

You have tripped upon side effects that they do not report. Side effects I noticed, and since posting, many others have reported as well.

Good luck with learning your lines!!

My best
Camigwen/Emily

PS – please stop by with your experiences off the drug – I am very interested in how you r symptoms change with dose reduction and when you are off. Thanks!

  David wrote @

Lamictal spelling and word problems are back.

100mg of Lamictal were causing the spelling, reading and memory problems I reported on here several months ago including depersonalization and visual disturbances. Well I dialed back to 50mg and it got better. But, it’s come back, clearly it has something to do with building up in my system because I’m forgetting things really easily, can’t concentrate and reading and writing are difficult.

Meeting with a new psych tomorrow and plan on going off Lamictal completely. It doesn’t help with my moods anyway so maybe a low-dose of Lithium will be better.

  Emily’s Camigwen wrote @

Hi David

I am sorry to hear that. I hope that in the months since you posted this comment that things have gotten better for you. I am on about 112 mg (don’t ask – splitting pills in strange ways to get the right dose) and it’s working well but I still have balance issues.

How is the new psych?

Cami

  David wrote @

Emily,

Thanks so much for posting this blog because it’s really helped me feel much less frightened of what’s been happening to me and have hope that it will get better!

I do work onstage. I also do music. I wrote a song about another med I took once called Zyprexa, you can listen to it here: http://www.myspace.com/hanburymusic

I’ll report back in a few weeks. I just spent about two weeks @ 75mg and should be cutting down to 50 this week. (I was on a 100mg)

  Emily’s Camigwen wrote @

Hi David

I must admit – this song made me switch! (I am not upset – it was not *triggering*)

It was odd – I didn’t like the beginning – kinda weirded me out, but at about 1:10 I love your voice and the editorial comments about the drug. Emily left – to uncomfortable for her. But then I was really interested in the words and tone of voice…”side effects profile” – I like that part!

Neat stuff that you sing about your experiences with the drug, and that the style of the music and your different voices illustrate it in addition to just singing about it.

Cami

  ginny wrote @

I thought I was loosing my mind. I’m glad I’m not alone here. I can’t type or write like I used to ever since I took lamictal or lexapro. I have been off the medication for 2 years now but still have this side effect. is it brain damage? I wonder if I can sue for this problem. it is annoying and terrible since I am a student in college and can’t afford typing mistakes. How do you fix this problem? The biggest mistake is adding an extra vowel or typing a space that does not belong… like the word “the” – I type it “t he” a space after the “t”. Weird???

  Emily’s Camigwen wrote @

HI Ginny

I can’t comment about something 2 years after you get off the drug; I can only report my experiences and relay what else I have seen on the internet. If I were you, I would go back to the doctor who prescribed it and talk to him about this. I wouldn’t immediately assume something as severe as brain damage. From what I have researched about the drug, it doesn’t act in a way one would expect that. I wrote about that elsewhere.

Annoying, yes. Bugs me to no end, but my typing has gotten better since my dose was reduced. So, it is directly related to my current dosage.

Your typing mistakes, I am happy to report to you, are pretty normal. Your brain wants to type a word like “the” and it requires motor control from both your right and left hands. If the signal travels through the brain to your muscles to your fingers and one signal goes just a BIT faster than the others… swapped letters. I read years ago that small timing problems like this are somehow related to dyslexia. Annoying, but not brain damage.

My advice, pay attention to your spell checker. It is one of my best friends!

My best
Cami

  Connie wrote @

I am so happy to see this – I thought I was literally losing my mind! I have felt like I have gotten just totally stupid and must be getting early Alzheimer’s or something. My doctor had said that he had never heard of these side effects and implied that I must be imagining them. I’ve got an appointment January 6th with a different doctor and I truly want to get off the Lamictal. I sure hope this clears up once I am off it.

  Emily’s Camigwen wrote @

Hi Connie

Yes, we are NOT nuts! (Well, not in THAT way! 😉

Feel free to print out this article and the many comments if you want to show a doctor anecdotal evidence. We are not a formal “study” here and I am not doctor, but enough folks have stopped by to say, “Hey! I’m not crazy about this writing stuff!” – so there is something to it for several people.

Good luck with the new doc – stop back and tell us what happens.

My best
Camigwen

  Matt wrote @

Wow! I reported this to my Dr. when I first started lamictal and we both laughed it off. I’ve stopped Lamictal for over a year now and the problem has grown steadily worse. I clearly recall reporting to the Dr. that I had problems with the word “with” I stared invariably typing it as”wiht” and it has continued to this day.

Lately I’ve noticed when I’m typing words that shouldn’t be there are, they just pop out of left field. I’m on a lot of message boards and I find I have to carefully read everything I type just to be certain. Mentally I know what I’m saying, but occasionally what ends up on the screen is different. Weird.

I too would be interested to see if there is any class action taken, this is getting very annoying and will impact me quite a bit in the future.

  Emily’s Camigwen wrote @

Hi Matt

Interesting. I am still on Lamictal so I can’t comment from my personal experience. However, my side effects (including the handwriting/typing thing) were starting to get too much for me, so my doc reduced my dose a bit. It still helps with the DID and the side effects improved a lot. I can touch type a LOT better.

So, reducing the dose helped, but I can’t comment any more than that.

I am not sure how old you are, but is natural aging an issue? I used to type words backwards a lot before the Lamictal.

I have no idea about a class action lawsuit. My side effects are not something that affects my life in that way. I wish you well in however you decide to pursue your own health.

Thanks for writing,

Cami/Emily

PS – years ago, Microsoft Word had a command called the Twiddle command or something like that. Perhaps CTRL-T or ALT-T. I don’t recall. If you had reversed two letters in a word like “lvoe” and needed to fix it, you placed the cursor between the ‘v’ and the ‘o’ and did the keystroke. It automatically swapped the letters to make the word ‘love’.

So, I guess what I am saying is that enough people regularly reverse letters that a major word processing package actually created a tool for it. So maybe it’s just a natural result of some part of our biology or physiology.

  Matt wrote @

Thanks for responding!

I hang the problem on the Lamictal because that’s when it started. I have a very clear memory of discussing this with the Dr. I was on pretty high doses 400-500 mg for over a year. Ever since I’ve had the problem with typing and after reading the earlier post I realize also with my handwriting. It has a fair amount of impact on my life.

Luckily, Firefox can be configured to enable an inline spell checker so when typing in text boxes like this errors show up and can easily be corrected.

  Emily’s Camigwen wrote @

Hi Matt

Yeah – that is a much higher dose than me – I am currently on 150 mg. Yes, a spell checker is a wonderful thing!

Cami/Emily

  David wrote @

Hi you guys,

I posted here a few months ago and wanted to come back and report what’s happening. Since I last posted I reduced my Lamictal from 100mg to 75mg and then to 50mg. All of the language, typing and reading oriented problems went away shortly after reducing to 50mg.

I was able to easily memorize text for a show I was in and my short-term memory has returned as well.

best,

–d–

  Emily’s Camigwen wrote @

Hi David

Thanks for getting back to us to update your story. I was hoping you would to see if you were doing better, and also to see if anyone else saw symptoms get better with a reduction in dosage, like I experienced. I am not a doctor, but 50 mg is a pretty low dosage I think. I am at 150 mg and stable on it. My typing problems are mostly gone, although I still have problems recalling words (only can see the pictures) and my balance is bad. But I am getting better at recovering loss of balance so it looks like I just tripped over my own foot!

I am glad you wrote back – my best to you!

Cami/Emily

  Heather wrote @

Finally – i found somebody else has this problem. I’m actually taking lexapro and noticed within a week or so of taking 20mg that I seemed to have developed dyslexia. Like all of you, I have always been a perfect typist and very good speller. But I keep switching letters now and numbers too. don’t have the weird spaces between letters problem. I am totally convinced that it is real now because yesterday I was in a meeting and wrote down an N backward – never in my life! this is written on paper conclusive evidence. Thanks so much for posting about this problem. I am worried what else is happening inside my brain.

  Emily’s Camigwen wrote @

Hi Heather

I had the typing, etc., problems on Lamictal, not Lexapro. Not sure you have a mistake in there. I am not a doctor or a therapist, but I will caution that a symptom doesn’t mean a disease or a side effect of a drug. I think we all have a touch of the symptoms of dyslexia and stress makes it worse. Lack of sleep makes it worse. I am not downplaying your experiences – what you experience is that you experience and that is real. I would just talk to a doctor about it if is related to meds. They should know about any side effects you experience.

As for what is going on in your brain…my postings and musing here are based on my own experiences, and my own research. I think a lot of what I write is based on good facts and research at the time I write them. But, my writings are not peer-reviewed so, can’t be taken as any sort of comment about anyone’s brain (except my thoughts about my own!!!!) If you have any concerns at all, researching on the internet is fine, but take your findings and your ideas to your doctor. I hope he/she will be able to put your mind as ease. Personally, I think many “mental health” issues have brain issues as a basis, but can often be addressed with meds and/or talk therapy. We have so little idea how the brain works in all this – speculation lots of times – the doctors have the best experience. If you have one you don’t feel comfortable with or discounts your thoughts or experiences, then find another one.

Please don’t take my response as unsupportive of what you are experiencing – not at all. I am only relaying what has helped me, and I hope you are able to work out things that help you best.

Good luck!

Cami/Emily

  john davis wrote @

dear emily

I can relate with all that you have enunciated about hand control problems with medication and was thrilled to read your story. my doctor is a quack that can’t see or listen to what i say. it is a va doctor, so what can I say about such ignorance coming from there on medication side effects and their believeability from them.

  Emily’s Camigwen wrote @

John

Well, I think most doctors are not aware of side effects that are not explicitly listed in the package inserts unless they prescribe the drug a lot and pay attention to how it works. That is clearly the case with my doctor – he pays close attention, and I believe he is not the norm.

But the bottom line for this, I suppose, is that you are aware that the drug MAY be related to the side effect. I can’t say for anyone’s case that it IS the cause, but for me we believe it is. If the side effect for you is something you can deal with, and your doctor doesn’t think it comes from anything else or is important, then perhaps you just have some solice in understanding. Of course, I am not a doctor so don’t take this as some sort of recommendation or statement of fact… all I relay is anecdotal – stuff some of us think is related. And for you it may be the same.

Good luck! And thank you for your enthusiastic support of my post and experiences!

Camigwen/Emily

  N Strange wrote @

Hi everone,

I just joined CWE. I breathed a sigh of relief when I read your blogs. I thought I was imagining things. I can write, typing is not easy. I know what letters to use, I’ll use the wrong letter. I watch the keyboard while I type , but my short-term memory,remembering things that I need to do, and memorization are not very good. I should remember simple things like going to someone’s house or the first three digits of a telephone number. I am a 30 year old married female who has a college degree
I am currently taking 600mg of Lamictal, 1000mg of Keppra XR and 10 mg of Lexapro. My dosages and medications have been changed so many times. Another side effect of Keppra is very vivid dreams so I don’t sleep good and I usually have to take naps during the day
N Strange

  Emily’s Camigwen wrote @

The body is a crazy thing. I am always trying to figure out if something going on with me is normal aging or a side effect of something. My lamictal was reduced again last month because I started having bad side effects again, so it appears that your body reacts differently over time. Changing doses probably isn’t a science, but takes time to get right. My doctor is trying to balance the benefits with the side effects.

I hope you are doing well with it all.

  Morgan wrote @

I have had the same problems. Typing, memory loss, trouble finding the right word. I am only on 100 mg! I will be coming off of this drug. It really does not appear to be helping much anyway but my doctor seems to think it is what I need. I think I will be the judge of that from now on. Thanks everyone!

  Emily’s Camigwen wrote @

Hi Morgan. In my experience, 100mg can still cause some symptoms. I’m sorry to hear that it isn’t helping you – I have no idea your dosing regimen, but with Lamictal you have to ramp up very very slowly – I didn’t see benefits for nearly 2 months until I hit a higher dose. If this isn’t working – I hope something else does. And now you know to really check out the side effects of the next one so you don’t think you’re the only one!

Cami

  christopher wrote @

Thank you for your post. I’ve had the same side effects since I began to approach my maximum dose of Lamictal about two months ago. (I’m taking 150mg twice a day.) Mostly, I misspell words, make spacing errors, and delete correct letters before I realize that they were not incorrect. In addition, I find my mind works slower when I try to type my thoughts spontaneously. I can usually type away as my thoughts come to me. And I think it’s worth noting that, thus far, this message has taken me about two minutes to compose.

The worst part is, I’m a magazine editor. Fortunately, the typing errors have minimal effect on my editing; they are more extreme when I’m actually composing sentences of my own, such as in emails.

I should note that I’ve had great success with Lamictal, and so far I’ve experienced no other side effects. Still, this is frustrating.

christopher

  Emily’s Camigwen wrote @

Hi Christopher

I smiled in recognition of your frustration – when my hands typing can’t keep up with my thoughts, it frustrates the hell out of me! And it gets/got worse when I was consciously *thinking* about trying to type better. Luckily, my dose has been reduced enough that the worse of that is gone. However, for you and editing, that stinks.

Thanks for sharing and glad it’s working for you otherwise.

Cami

  Adam wrote @

It makes me feel slightly better reading reports of people experiencing similar problems, but I am still ABSOLUTELY TERRIFIED. I’ve been off Lamictal since November but most of the cognitive problems I experienced remain. Interestingly typing doesn’t really seem to be a particularly big problem with me. Reading, or more appropriately not reading is what makes me want to tear my hair out. I can’t do it. At all. I will read a sentence and not be able to remember anything I just read. I have to reread everything over and over again to get it to stick at all. It is truly a bizarre feeling and is difficult for me to explain to others or even understand myself. My short-term memory is atrocious, and I will frequently forget a thought 5 seconds after it pops into my head. I used to be smart, but now I feel like my IQ has dropped fifty points. I used to be a good reader and a good writer, but now I have to spend over half an hour writing this little paragraph.
I’m a college student who has been forced to take only 6 credits this semester and am desperately in search of answers. My psychiatrist, whom I have a lot of respect for, is baffled. I am seeing a neurologist in a month, and after that I don’t know…

On a side note, it didn’t work for me, but I have come across multiple reports of people with cognitive impairments stemming from Lamictal use benefiting from this….http://www.dr-bob.org/babble/20070719/msgs/772648.html
Perhaps it could be helpful to some of you?

  Emily’s Camigwen wrote @

Hi Adam

I feel the same way with the memory – it feels like I am trying to think around a cotton ball. 😛

I haven’t heard about Cerefolin NAC but did search around on it. It’s a combination of folic acid, B-12 and some type of antioxidant. Hmmm. It’s worth asking my Meds doc about the next time I see him. Thanks for the link.

At first I was a bit concerned when I went to this website – most of what he has posted uses the terms”psycho-babble”which just seemed a real turn-off to me, like he was trashing the issues we have with medications. I don’t know – I’d certainly check anything he wrote against the literature.

Anyway – thanks for the info!
Cami

  Judy Crews wrote @

I’m sure I’m not on the right site, but was looking for anything concerning side effects of Lamictal. Maybe someone can advise me:

Sometime after I started taking Lamictal in 2005, severe musculoskeletal problems started. I stopped Lamictal, but the pain didn’t stop.This lasted for a couple of months, then went away—to reappear several other times.

Then in September of 2008 the pain reappeared, and I have not had one pain-free day since.

Has anyone else had this problem?

  Emily’s Camigwen wrote @

Hi Judy

We’re not the site for any official statements about side effects – just some first-hand experiences. Some of us have experienced the musculoskeletal problems but I don’t think anyone had significant pain. More like balance issues and visual disturbances. I would ask your prescribing physician – could it be something other than the Lamictal causing the pain?

I hope you are feeling better,
Cami

  Jannie wrote @

So glad I have the chance of not having Alzheimer disorder at this point. This isn’t one of those misery loves company things, but I’m glad I’m not alone because I have learned so much from all of you. I was lucky because my NP’s boss by law has to audit 5% of her charts randomly. Mine got picked and the doc made a note that sometimes Lamictal can cause dyslexia but “it is very rare and probably not the cause of my pervasive dyslexia,” or something to that effect. Hmmmmmmm. I immediately did the Google thing and voila! I am a medical transcriptionist and my paycheck and quality have both deteriorated over the last year and a half, getting worse every month. That really works on your self-esteem if you are used to being a perfectionist in a certain part of your life. I’m only on 150 mg. After I switch to Prozac, I am definitely going to back off on the Lamictal.It sure does help but not worth these side effects. I drop everything, balance is scary to the point that I don’t go anywhere for fear of falling and just having to make conversation with someone and screwing it up. My husband has made comments about my memory and we’ve actually had an arugment or 2 because I just did not get what he was saying and he thought I was messing with him! He gets it now, tho’. I’ll let you know what happens, probably won’t start weaning the Lamictal until December. Thanks to everyone!

  Emily’s Camigwen wrote @

Jannie

Sorry to hear of the problems you have been experiencing with Lamictal. It’s amazing how similar these side effects are and yet the medical profession doesn’t yet recognize them. Well, we’re not a part of a clinical study.

I can identify with the “perfectionist” part of your post – me too! I am dropping things more than I used to, and the balance is still a problem. Not too bad since we dialed me back to about 112 mg but I regularly trip over my feet – not bad, just little skips that I tend to recover from and not really notice too much anymore. However, the dropping things and knocking things over with my hands has gotten me frustrated. Grrr.

By now you are weaning off the Lamictal – how is that going?

Cami

  Lynda wrote @

I have had these same problems and have been trying to figure it out. I hadn’t thought of Lamictal, which I am on. I am going to mention it to my pdoc. I have been typing for over 40 years and woke up one day having extreme difficulty. It was like a disconnection in my brain to my hands. It happened so abruptly I had to wonder if I had a stroke. I have had terrible handwriting for the past few months and I have been omitting letters. I have done this in my own name. Thank you for posting this as it will help me to talk to my pdoc.

  Emily’s Camigwen wrote @

Hi Lynda – I’d mention it. Since I wrote that post, I’ve found much more information on the internet that this is not an isolated problem, and not just one that a few people like me wrote about back then. See what your pdoc says and I hope that helps to unravel the mystery. I don’t like it but if I really really concentrate I can write with fewer problems, but it takes a long time. I can type better if I don’t think about typing, but just let my fingers go. If I think about it, mistakes everywhere!


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