I really want to quit smoking. I previously smoked cigarettes, a pack a day, from age 18-32, then quit using nicotine lozenges. I'm now 40 years old and have been smoking cigarettes again since last September. I'm currently smoking between 10-20 cigarettes a day. I have bipolar 1 disorder and my primary care physician said that this was safe for me to take to help me quit smoking. She also told me that I could also use nicotine lozenges in addition to taking Chantix. I'm worried about two things. One, will taking Chantix worsen the bipolar disorder? And two, can I really also use nicotine lozenges as well as using Chantix? I've done a lot of research regarding all of this, but the information is confusing and conflicting. I plan on checking with my psychiatrist about all of this as well, just thought I'd ask about it in the meantime. I haven't started taking Chantix just yet, I'm trying to gather more information. I would really like to begin using Chantix if possible, just have some concerns. Any advice? I would really appreciate any and all suggestions, others experience and knowledge or thoughts regarding this. Thanks in advance.
Greetings! I smoked nearly a pack a day and successfully quit with Chantix. I also experience Bipolar Disorder I. The only concern with Chantix is it may counteract the effect of an anti-depressant due to Chantix agonism of the 5HT3 serotonin receptor; however, I noticed no change in mood while on Chantix. I currently take Lamactil, Prozac, and Ativan, and only take an antipsychotic (usually Abilify) when manic symptoms emerge. My doctor states it depends on where you are in your cycle. Mania, depression, or baseline. My advice would not to try Wellbutrin. I experienced severe affective relapse due to Wellbutrin's strong effects on the dopaminergic system. I hope this was helpful.
*There have been reports of depression, mania, psychosis, hallucinations, paranoia, delusions, homicidal ideation, aggression, hostility, anxiety, and panic, as well as suicidal ideation, suicide attempt, and completed suicide in patients attempting to quit smoking while taking Chantix [see Warnings and Precautions (5.1)]*
*Although co-administration of varenicline (1 mg twice daily) and transdermal nicotine (21 mg/day) for up to 12 days did not affect nicotine pharmacokinetics, the incidence of nausea, headache, vomiting, dizziness, dyspepsia, and fatigue was greater for the combination than for NRT alone. In this study, eight of twenty-two (36%) patients treated with the combination of varenicline and NRT prematurely discontinued treatment due to adverse events, compared to 1 of 17 (6%) of patients treated with NRT and placebo.*
Just some things to consider.
Regards and good luck!
This is only based upon my experience. I took Chantix for about a month in 2007. I was not diagnosed with Bipolar 1, despite occasional bouts of severe depression. I believe I did have a full blown manic episode during that month. I was not on any medication, or diagnosed yet, so take this with the proverbial grain of salt. I can not say if Chantix caused it. Unfortunately, later during the month I was sexually assaulted by my superior which ended my career after a trial. Now, 2 years later and finally diagnosed, I wonder if the mania contributed to putting myself in a bad position. The only variable was me starting Chantix. A predator is a predator, but mania (I get depressed, organize stupid stuff, rapid speech, work overnight - not happy mania) did occur. My primary doctor now refuses to prescribe it to anyone.
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