User Reviews for Lithium

Also known as: Eskalith, Eskalith-CR, Lithium Carbonate ER, Lithobid, Lithonate, Lithotabs

The following information is NOT intended to endorse drugs or recommend therapy. While these reviews might be helpful, they are not a substitute for the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgement of healthcare practitioners in patient care.

Learn more about Lithium.

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Condition DownUp Reviews Compare Avg. Ratings DownUp
Cluster Headaches 5 reviews 35 medications
   
8.4
Mania 9 reviews 14 medications
   
8.4
Bipolar Disorder 101 reviews 48 medications
   
8.2
Schizoaffective Disorder 3 reviews 28 medications
   
8.0
Depression 4 reviews 75 medications
   
7.5
Borderline Personality Disorder 2 reviews 6 medications
   
4.5
Cyclothymic Disorder 0 reviews 0 medications Not rated - Be the first
Intermittent Explosive Disorder 0 reviews 0 medications Not rated - Be the first
Summary of Lithium reviews 124 reviews 8.2

Reviews for Lithium

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Review by swaggymaggie:

User Rating:  
   
5.0

For Bipolar Disorder: I have depressive bipolar 2 which never is a huge issue until there's less Sun due to it combining with my seasonal mood disorder to send me over the edge. I started taking lithium in January and I recently have just stopped (July) so about 7 solid months or so. Granted this worked great I felt more clear headed the first couple months except it messed my stomach up horrible in combination with my irritable bowel syndrome. Plus my periods turned brown and would be two weeks late every time which is horrible nerve wrecking. My hormones completely lost it and still have yet to go back to normal. Granted I'm only 18 and I could be growing once more and I've changed my acne routines but my acne completely changed making my skin.

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August 11, 2014 12:23 AM

Review by king bean (taken for less than 1 month):

User Rating:  
   
3.0

For Bipolar Disorder: Didn't give it much of a chance - 2 weeks. Just felt lousy on it - dizzy, clumsy, not any benefits. In retrospect, should have stayed with it. Still the gold standard for Bipolar 1, which is not really me. Blood tests required, etc.

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August 4, 2014 2:35 PM

Review by happy2012:

User Rating:  
   
8.0

For Bipolar Disorder: When I originally got sick with insomnia and mania, I was prescribed Seroquel. 5 years later was admitted to the hospital and a student doc suggested I try lithium. It kills fast onset mania quickly and fortunately have minor ill effects from it. Lost precision hand eye coordination for playing sports like baseball, that's the only issue I have had with it. And minor sun sensitivity. Its also good being a natural substance on the table of elements so it's not a synthetic medicine. Very lucky to be on a low level that works so no need for constant blood monitoring.

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July 7, 2014 1:16 PM

Review by Thecircusrules (taken for 6 months to 1 year):

For Bipolar Disorder: Prescribed 1200mg of lithium for bipolar 1, alongside 800mg of Seroquel (quetiapine). Problems early on with lithium toxicity due to a blood pressure medicine, once sorted out this medicine is awesome. I still feel happy and a little sad at times but it has removed the scare out of auditory and visual hallucinations.

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June 19, 2014 11:01 AM

Review by GingerLee347:

User Rating:  
   
9.0

For Bipolar Disorder: Hell for many years now. 2 months ago I was once again fetal positioned in a laundry basket rocking back and forth in the attic and I finally said enough is enough%u2026I am going to get help. I am a rapid cycler-about every 10 days my episodes would begin again-I had about 5 good days/month. I never wanted to be "zombiefied" by medicine so, I reluctantly and VERY defensively went to the doctor and asked for help. They gave me Lithium and I can't believe the change! I finally feel free for the first time in my life. I am on a lower dose than some. I still have some symptoms, but feeling them is allowing me to work through them, and also NOT lose my creativity. Only side effect is that I walk into things- annoying.

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May 26, 2014 11:13 PM

Review by Flatlined (taken for less than 1 month):

For Bipolar Disorder: I have been diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder and I have been on lithium for a week and it has instantly turned me into a lifeless zombie! I have no feeling except depression now. I have no energy to do anything. I've tried Lamictal and Depakote but they didn't calm the anger outbursts. The only plus is I have lost 5lbs! I'm at the point of giving up. I've previously been on Zoloft, Prozac, Paxil and Lexapro...all separately. These worked for depression to an extent but not for the mania.

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May 7, 2014 11:21 AM

Review by brenndo (taken for 1 to 6 months):

User Rating:  
   
10

For Bipolar Disorder: I had been on lamotrigine for nearly 10 years and I noticed that slowly over time it was losing its effectiveness, and my episodes had become more and more extreme, to the point of one of my depressive episodes becoming psychotic in nature. Then I was hospitalized and put on Lithium. After a month on the medication, and two weeks stable, my initial fears of lithium have faded. The medication has given me some unwanted side effects such as vision changes, hand tremors, muscle twitching but for the mental stability this medicine has given me... it's all worth it. My psychotic thoughts and depressive episode has mostly ended, and the blood tests are a pain but I highly recommend anyone with Bipolar, especially Bipolar I to be open minded.

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April 8, 2014 1:38 PM

Review by lexana (taken for 1 to 6 months):

User Rating:  
   
1.0

Lithobid (lithium) for Bipolar Disorder: Many years ago I was diagnosed with bipolar ll. Lithium was my doctor's first choice. Not even sure how effective it was. The side effects were awful. I could not work, I lost down to 95 pounds. I was so weak I had difficulty climbing stairs. I shook so bad I could not sign my own name. Then my doctor started to add all sorts of medicines to counteract the side effects. I became hypothyroid had to take medicines for that, tremor had to take medicines for that (didn't work well). Dr. decreased dose (didn't help much). I was on leave from work for 12 weeks. Finally stopped the lithium. It took awhile for my Dr. to believe my problems with this medicine because they were not typical. Those 12 weeks were the worst.

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March 9, 2014 7:36 PM

Review by drk21:

User Rating:  
   
10

For Cluster Headaches: This is a godsend for daily cluster headaches.

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February 3, 2014 3:23 PM

Review by JenKat (taken for 1 to 6 months):

User Rating:  
   
8.0

For Bipolar Disorder: Currently on Lithicarb 500mg taken as 2 x 250mg tablets taken 1 morning and one night. Was bumped up to 750mg but reduced back after severe dry skin and digestive discomfort as side effects. Was finally put on lithium after previously being misdiagnosed with just depression and general anxiety & put on Venlafaxine which exacerbated my mania...hence was finally correctly diagnosed with bipolar. Suicidal thoughts are now minimal and I got over the need to pee excessively which comes with increasing your fluid intake after first starting my meds. Now I am 4 months in & I have gained weight but that doesn't bother me as much as my loss of creativity & general lack of motivation. On the plus side, this doesn't bother me as much as it should.

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December 28, 2013 1:48 AM

Review by CrackerMan21 (taken for 1 to 6 months):

User Rating:  
   
1.0

For Mania: For some, lithium is the most effective choice for bipolar mania. Unfortunately for me, it's not. My body rebelled against it immediately and without pause for its entire 60-day 'trial'. My bowels were never solid the entire time. I'm amazed now that I never recognized any dehydration symptoms over that time. It worked for my dear departed mother, but not for me, but I gave it a shot.

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December 12, 2013 7:48 AM

Review by Pineapple38 (taken for less than 1 month):

User Rating:  
   
10

For Bipolar Disorder: I've been taking Lithium for three weeks now. For the first time in years I feel balanced. My major ups and downs have subsided and I do not have any side effects at all. Since I work in construction I monitor my fluid intake to avoid too much lithium in my system. The only drawback to drinking more water is having to frequent the restroom more often. My sleep has improved as well so all my previous medications are no longer needed. Currently I'm on 300mg 3x/day. Everybody's body responds differently to every medication out there and luckly I found something great.

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October 30, 2013 9:24 PM

Review by Proponent of Lithium For Suicidal Ideation:

User Rating:  
   
9.0

For Depression: Lithium is my Wonder Drug. I'm 51, was depressed on & off for years, had major depression for 7+ years, & have been suicidal since age 7. The last 2 years were exhausting trying to stay ahead of the suicidal pull in spite of entering therapy & getting medicated. I finally asked my psychiatrist for ANY aggressive treatment -- regardless of the severity of the side effects -- because I was going to lose the battle. He asked me to try Lithium, first. Within a month, I had ZERO desire to kill myself. Side effects: Major leg tremors (I take Effexor). I feel a little flat, but NO complaints; I can't REMEMBER the last time I wasn't suicidal, DAILY. I'm STUNNED at how this "alternative" feels & am glad I held on long enough to experience it.

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October 21, 2013 6:18 AM

Review by jaqi (taken for 2 to 5 years):

User Rating:  
   
9.0

For Bipolar Disorder: I have been taking lithium bicarbonate for a little over 2 years. My dosage has fluctuated because I am also medicated for manic depression. I am 37 and have been medicated, on and off, for depression since I was 18. Lithium seems to help with my bipolar symptoms, not so much for my depression. My side effects have been: increased thirst, tremors, weight loss & occasional stomach aches if I do not eat enough when I take my pills. I am fine with these so long as I feel 'normal.' Frequent blood work is not bothersome as I understand they are screening for my own health...lithium toxicity levels, kidney functions, thyroid activity.

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October 20, 2013 9:08 PM

Review by Bearcat315 (taken for 10 years or more):

User Rating:  
   
9.0

For Bipolar Disorder: I have taken lithium since I was diagnosed with bipolar 1 in 1993. I stopped taking it for 10 years and then started taking it again and it's been 6 years back on it. I wouldn't substitute this medication. It works very well. The correct dosage is what matters most. The therapeutic window is 0.6 to 1.2 just because the level is slightly lower isn't always bad. It's alright to manage some of the symptoms but when it gets above 1.2 toxicity becomes an issue. It has to be maintained properly. My only drawback is occasional hand tremors and in high doses it tends to dull personality.

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October 10, 2013 5:02 AM

Review by sues1066:

User Rating:  
   
1.0

For Depression: Have suffered with clinical depression for fifteen years and have been on numerous antidepressants. Have now been taking lithium for 9 months and have had a lot of problems including hands shaking, legs feeling as though they are going to give way a lot of the time, whole body feeling heavy, nausea, parts of my body suddenly jerking, sweating, but worst of all I feel as though I have had a personality transplant and do not recognize the agitated person I have become, the nightmares, my partner is very concerned. I am reducing the dose to come off it. I have just noticed on this site that it has a high interaction risk if taken with venlafaxine which I have been prescribed with it at the same time.

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October 8, 2013 4:16 PM

Review by lsrigg (taken for 10 years or more):

User Rating:  
   
10

For Depression: Started Lithium in 1986. This has been my bedrock since then. In 2011 my doctor added Wellbutrin because I was sub-clinically depressed and felt stuck.

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August 20, 2013 11:39 AM

Review by 123Katherine123 (taken for 2 to 5 years):

User Rating:  
   
10

For Depression: I was on many anti-depressants and none of them helped with my suicidal thoughts except lithium. Some medications I was on made me better, but very flat and emotionless. For me, lithium only takes the sharp edges off the bad emotions and leaves room for good (but not manic) ones. I had slight hand tremors for about a year after starting this, which was annoying but not incapacitating. They are gone now. I also gained about 10 pounds during the first few months, but lost it easily and I am now lighter than when I started. People used to tell me: Oh you'll gain so much weight, but it is mostly water weight because you get very thirsty. Overall, my quality of life is much, much better. Also you can safely stay on lithium for years.

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August 6, 2013 3:01 PM

Review by Lysse (taken for 1 to 6 months):

User Rating:  
   
7.0

For Borderline Personality Disorder: Didn't help win the emotional attachment aspect of Borderline Personality Disorder, but it definitely reduced my suicidal thoughts and self harm urges.

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July 22, 2013 1:49 PM

Review by Ceareal1978 (taken for less than 1 month):

User Rating:  
   
6.0

For Bipolar Disorder: I have found lithium works awesome for my depression/bipolar however the side effects are causing a problem. After couple weeks the nausea has not gone away. I am losing my instant memory and found myself confused when doing or talking about a topic, I can't remember what I just said or heard.

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June 17, 2013 4:43 PM

Review by Lilli in Waiting (taken for 10 years or more):

User Rating:  
   
8.0

Eskalith (lithium) for Bipolar Disorder: This has been a great medication for me. It brought me out of a 4-year-long depression, and I have been on it over a decade with minimal side effects.

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May 28, 2013 7:08 PM

Review by lynn (taken for less than 1 month):

For Bipolar Disorder: I notice improvement, after 4 days

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May 5, 2013 6:26 PM

Review by Lith Guy (taken for 2 to 5 years):

For Bipolar Disorder: Lithium worked amazing wonders for me... for about a month. Then it stopped. I've been trying to get it to work again for two years.

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April 24, 2013 6:00 PM

Review by plibs:

User Rating:  
   
9.0

For Bipolar Disorder: Terrific against mania, haven't had a manic episode in 2 years. Also with barely any manic symptoms. However, for me it's not great against depression but does help a little. It also helped with suicidal tendencies.

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April 5, 2013 2:07 AM

Review by Anita12234:

User Rating:  
   
10

For Cluster Headaches: Lithium saved my life. Nothing worked on my cluster headaches until my Dr. prescribed lithium. It was miraculous and worked within 24 hours. It broke the cycle. Subsequently I have also used oxygen therapy and it too has been very effective. Just not as easy as taking a pill, but less side effects.

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April 2, 2013 4:34 PM

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