Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

AP (Anti-Psychotic Med) a godsend but hate the weight related side effects


#1

This may seem like a trivial post compared to the crisis posts, however; I just want to express that while I am thrilled with the results of AP on my son’s mental state and ability I am also so sad to see his body change as a result. He was a very svelte athlete before sz and now is 40 lbs overweight and looks bloated with stretch marks. He works out 5 times a week and doesnt complain anout the weight gain but honestly it does make me sad for him. While one big problem is gone (thank God) another issue has emerged. I just hope that he can gain control of his body again so he doesn’t end up diabetic with heart disease due to weight.


#2

@TAG Your post is not trivial it is a big concern of a lot of parents. My own son initially gained 100 lbs…and kept it for the better part of about 8 years…only recently has he started to cut back on certain kinds of junk food, (none of which I buy) and now he has been walking at least 1 hour every day for a few months and he has lost 25 lbs so far…it looks promising that he can lose even more if he keeps it up, and ironically his health has not been too adversely affected…I have had everything checked…his heart is good, his lungs are good in spite of smoking almost a pack of cigarettes a day…his blood pressure is perfect and so long as his A1C does not elevate anymore than it is he is not diabetic so far…I am very hopeful and I think you can be too…it takes a long time to find what works food wise, activity wise and everything else…all we can do is what we do, cook and buy healthy food and make it available and walk along with them when we can. Also water intake is very critical…I got my son a tall reusable tumbler that he keeps filled at all times…he probably goes through about 3 of them a day…I think each one holds at least 2 1/2 cups. My best wishes to you and your son.


#3

Yes the drugs work and the weight issues ensues, Inhave learned to cook again we went to Lo- carb recipes, no sugar or very little sugar and use stevia instead. My son in the last year lost 67 pounds through diet modeification and walking/ running 10,000 + steps per day


#4

I see you mention AP, exactly what is it?


#5

My son has been on a cornucopia of medications for this disease, none of them have been very successful in his treatment, but all of them have made him gain weight. He has went from 165 pounds to 256 pounds in the last 4 years.
It’s very difficult to keep him on an exercise regime, as he suffers with bouts of depression and self loathing. He gets panic attacks when he goes outside, so walking with him is not an option. I bought him an elliptical to workout on. He gets motivated for a few days, but then he gives up. The healthy vegetables and fruit I buy to snack on end up going in the trash from not getting eaten. Biggest problem is, food is about the only thing that brings him any comfort.
He has high cholesterol and triglycerides. His doctor has put him on Metformin. This will sometimes have weight loss associated with it, but has not done so for him.
He has had a DNA test that tells you which medications his body will metabolize, unfortunately he can only metabolize 3 or 4 of them. He is now on Clozorile, which is not one of them, but he is tolerating it. I’m considering having him switched to Vraylar. It’s something new we haven’t tried. Unfortunately, as with all antipsychotics, weight gain is a side effect with it too.
He doesn’t like being on the medication and it is a constant battle to keep him med compliant. His doctor has told him that if he loses weight he would probably be able to put him on a lower dose. I know that if he lost weight, he would have a better self worth and feel less social anxiety.
I know that they have performed weight loss surgery on people that are on mental health medication, but I don’t know if it has been a sustainable solution. This is a last resort in my mind so I haven’t really investigated this.
I will keep fighting this battle with you Sister.


#6

Small comment. I have an eliptical and I too got bored after a few days. So what I tried, is plonking a laptop in front of the trainer and watching dvds of my favourite shows. I can pedal my way through a 30 minute episode of Cheers without even knowing it.


#7

that is fantastic, congrats on that :slight_smile:


#8

Unfortunately, my son hears things on the movies or shows that are not there, so he doesn’t like to watch movies or TV. Thanks for the idea though. Maybe when we find a medication that takes this symptom away, this idea might work.


#9

Anti-Psychotic medication


#10

Ah yes, my daughter also hears things from the TV that aren’t there. I wonder if they experience this with all TV shows or whether it’s confined to certain genres. We’ve always found laughter a great healer so I wonder if they hear voices during their favourite comedy show.


#11

My son started doing this too - hearing things from the TV.

Everything from he’s on a TV show to people talking to him through the TV.
I asked him about the people talking to him through the TV and he says the walk right up to the screen and talk to him.

Right before his most recent hospitalization, he said the TV itself was talking to him.

The interesting part is that this only happens with is TV - not the other TVs in the house, so he ends up leaving his off most of the time and watching the one in the living room or streaming stuff on his computer.

I bought him a new 4K smart TV for his birthday last summer and I’m trying to remember if that’s when it started. The TV in our living room is a nice big Plasma, but it’s old, so there’s no Smart capabilities - although we do have a dvd player attached that you can use for that.

Maybe, sometimes, older technology is better for this kind of thing? One things certain, I am not buying any of those things from Amazon or Google where you can just ask the little pod a question and get back an answer. He’d be asking if he was Jesus and all kinds of things - and it would give him some kind of answer back.


#12

My son does better if we watch Netflix or Hulu, since these are prerecorded, but that doesn’t always work either.
There are times he thinks any electronic device broadcasts what he is saying or thinking. When this happens we have to go for a drive when he wants to talk about something.


#13

http://www.webmd.com/mental-health/news/20080108/fighting-antipsychotic-weight-gain


#14

My son started seraquel in January since then he has gained at least 10 to 15 pounds. He eats dinner and 15 minutes later he’s eating again. It’s hard bc before his diagnosis he had lost weight and kept it off for years. Now I’ve got us all low carb to help him.


#15

I think it is short for anti-psychotic meds.


#16

I wish my son had only gained 10-15 pounds, once my son was on the right stabilizing meds, he quickly gained 100 pounds over the course of a year…finally it tapered off, he had a truly voracious appetite, now several years later his appetite has leveled out and decreased a little and he walks regularly almost daily for an hour and has so far only recently lost 25 pounds, I am planning to get him a bicycle soon and I believe he will lose more with that added form of exercise in addition to the walking…his health is quite good considering the weight, no severe issues to date so I am pleased. I can’t place weight over sanity either way…I am grateful he is sane for now.


#17

My son has only been on this medicine since mid January. He has a tendency to be heavy anyways (related to me, I look at baked goods and gain 10 pounds). I’m trying to keep him uplifted and active. He spends so much time in his room by himself. I make him come out and help me with whatever. I try to take him out hiking, bumming old abandoned places around. So I’m trying to keep him active. And if he’s active he gets tired, and if he’s tired he won’t run away :slight_smile: it’s a win win. And your 100% right sanity is more important. That’s why I’m not worried about the 15 pounds I’ve gained since this started.


#18

I seem to gain weight right along with my son too…And I can’t blame medicine. …But the exercising does help…And yes I like the win/win.


#19

My son also gained 100lbs on Invega. He lost some on Geodon, gained it back on Risperdal Consta, and is now losing on Clozaril.


#20

My son is not eating as much on Abilify OR he Is relapsing. Time will tell