Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

Doubts and Medicine Not Working - Question

Recently received this by email, perhaps people can add their responses below:


I am having doubts that my son was not diagnosed with the right type of schizophrenia. Also the medicine he is on is not working it seems. What am I to do.

I wonder if you (she) could just simply tell his psychiatrist that the meds aren’t working and to make a med change?

Well you can seek a second opinion just like with a physical illness. But I don’t know if this will cost you personally a lot of money. Also, it takes time for some medications to work. Maybe I shouldn’t use myself as an example but I was on a heavy dose of a medication for 8 months and I showed no improvement though it stopped me from getting worse. Eventually they lowered the dose and I became stable.

Yeah, you can tell your doctor that your sons current medication isn’t working and does he suggest a med change based on your sons psychiatric medical history. You could go to a different doctor for this too.

Your sons medication may be the right medication for him but it might currently be at the wrong dose and it might need to be adjusted. He may need a higher dose. Are you sure he’s taking it? A lot of people with schizophrenia do not like taking medication and, no offense, but your son might be telling you he’s taking it when he’s really not. Some people will "cheek’ their medication in front of you and spit it out later.

I wouldn’t worry too much about the exact diagnosis - they frequently get changed over time. The important thing is to make sure the most problematic symptoms are being treated well. It may take a number of weeks on medications to see a difference - but be sure to be in contact with the doctor and let them know how the medication is working.

I recommend you check out these sections of this website on how to get good treatment for your son:


This happened to the person I take care of. There are slow metabolizers who can’t metabolize many medications. We got a pharmacogenomics test that gave us the information we needed. He is a very slow metabolizer and most of the mainstream medications either didn’t work, or had significant side effects. It took a while and he is now doing very well on about half the normal dose.

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