Lamotrigine: A Case Study

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Lamotrigine, like any anticonvulsant drug, has withdrawal symptoms when stopped abruptly. Although lamotrigine has not shown to be a habit-forming or addictive drug, there is still the possibility of withdrawal symptoms when inappropriately discontinuing the drug. Most common cases of withdrawal symptoms are returns of bipolar episodes, headaches, depression, and irrational thinking. Discontinuation of lamotrigine is best done in small increments over several weeks, with the advice of a doctor. This is done in order to reduce the withdrawal symptoms and to allow a safe change in medications (Parker, C., 2016).
Empirical article - Lamotrigine:
The empirical article on lamotrigine is a case study by Case Western Reserve University and their
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The experiment was to see if lamotrigine was effective on patients with bipolar disorder who had also gone through prior pharmacotherapy. The method of this study was done through a trail of 75 patients with bipolar disorder during a 48 week period, alongside the study being open-trail. 62 patients were bipolar type I, 11 were type II and two were unknown. Mean age of the study was 44 years. 60 of the patients used lamotrigine with other types of therapy and 15 of the patients one used lamotrigine. All patients had presented different states of bipolar disorder ranging from manic, depression, or hypomania. 40 patients were in a depressed state and 31 were either manic, hypomanic or mixed state. In terms of result, 48% of the depressed state patients stated they received noticeable benefits from the drug while another 20% stated they only received a moderate amount of benefits. 81% of the manic state patients however stated they received noticeable benefits while only an additional 3% received a moderate amount of benefits. These responses were measured with either the 17-item Hamilton Depression Rating Scale or the Mania Rating Scale. Depressed patients in average saw a 42% decrease in the Hamilton scale, and in Mania there was an average of 74% decrease. (Calabrese JR1, 1999,…show more content…
However, with any trail and article, possible issues arise that must be questioned. For example, the article states that the trials ran for a 48 week period, which in my opinion was too short of a period to show the effectiveness of this drug. Drugs such as lamotrigine should be studied for several years in order to assess the long term effects of the drug on the brain, activity and overall effects on the patients bipolar condition. There could be a possibility that several long term effects could be produced in the long run but were unfortunately not done in trails to see these effects. Secondly, the article states that the trail was done as an open-trail. Open-trail’s unfortunately open the situation of bias as both the patients and the doctors have knowledge of the drug in use. The experiment should have involved the use of placebos so that the possibility of patient bias could be reduced and therefore making the overall trail much more successful. The possibility of bias can definitely make this trail untrustworthy and must definitely be seen with a grain of
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