A patient needs, and is under, 250 mg of Depakote twice a day. If shift to Depakote ER is desired, what should the dose be then, 250 ER or 500 mg ER?
25 Feb 2012
I've been prescribed and have been taking 2 / 250mg Depakote per day for several months. I found that it made me sleepy taking 1 pill every 12 hours, so I started taking both pills at 4-5 am (I am a night-owl) & went into a deep, long sleep, & after about a month of drowsiness, I would wake up refreshed and more clear-headed than I have felt in years since a head injury.
I recently saw a new psychiatrist who kept me on the same total 500 mg/day. They had sample Bottles of 500 mg Depakote Extended Release to take once per day (I still take it late night.) I Hate the Extended Release pills!! I am drowsy most of the time, and fall asleep every 2-3 hours, no matter what I am doing at the time! I actually fell asleep at a Restaurant with my boyfriend and friends a few nights ago, and don't remember how he got me home safely somehow on a scooter! I am in bed All the time, and think I am sleeping about 18+ hours/day because these Depakote E.R. seem to release something every few hours that overcomes me with instantaneous sleepies, which not only makes me non-productive, but can be dangerous, for I never know when or where I will pass out.
I am calling my shrinks office on Monday to ask for an emergency visit to return the bottle of Depakote Extended Release and ask for 500mg/day regular Depakote, or however it was prescribed before.
Depakote really is a miracle medicine for me! I no longer suffer from insomnia, for it does make me sleepy within an hour of taking the correct dosage for my size & needs, & I get a full night's sleep that is restorative for the first time in a decade or more! I lived in a fuzzy brain haze ever since my head injury 6 years ago, and started having Many small and a few more intense, scary seizures after being hit in the head 1 year ago. Depakote has given me a clear mind, and almost completely eliminated my seizures!!!
It did take me about a month or so for my body and brain to get used to taking it, because I was sleepy all the time. Once my Doctor & I found the right dosage, and the right time of night for me to take it, after a few weeks I started to feel something wonderful happening to me!
Good luck to those of you who are trying Depakote for your problems! It took over a month to find the right dosage for me, and get through the sleepiness, by working closely with my Doctor and Psychiatrist. I feel a new vibrance and love of life that I have missed out on for years, until trying, and being patient while my body adjusted, to Depakote! I just can't take the 500mg E.R.
Wishing you all Health & Happiness,
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