It seems that my psychiatric nurse practitioner, who prescribes my crazy meds, has quit me without notice. The Problem? I take a hefty dose of meds, I'm out, and I don't really want to have to quite cold turkey. An explanation and a few questions under the fold.
posted by The Pantless Wonder to Health & Fitness (31 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
YANA doctor/lawyer/professional of any sort. However, I know many of you take the crazy meds.
Apologies for the length in advance. Specific questions at the end.
I take 200mg of Zoloft and 150mg of Wellbutrin daily. I have been taking them for about two years. Despite some qualms, they've been extraordinarily helpful.
I am supposed to see my psychiatric nurse practitioner (PNP) every six months to check in, etc. I realize the importance of this. But I forgot to schedule the appointment, and so it has been more than six months since I saw him (it's been just under seven). It was forgetful and irresponsible on my part, I realize, but I've been out of town, it's been very busy at work, life, etc.
Last week, I realized I was about out of meds, so I put in my refill request to my pharmacy online, like I always do. Usually if I'm out of refills, they fax my PNP a note saying I'm out, he calls the prescription in, and it gets filled within a day or so. This time, however, it was several days and I hadn't heard from my PNP or the pharmacy. So I called the pharmacy and they informed me that my PNP had sent in a note that said since I hadn't seen him in six months, he wasn't refilling the prescription. Ok.
So I called my PNP and left a message (as I always do, since he screens his calls). I told him that we need to schedule a meeting ASAP, like this week, and that in the meantime if he could call in the refill that would be much appreciated, as SSRI discontinuation syndrome is not, by all reports, a very pleasant thing. Plus I'm not thrilled to return to the mental state I was in prior to starting the meds.
He has not returned my calls or called in my prescription. The fact that he declined to refill it without calling me to tell me he did so, forcing me to find out from the pharmacy, is further evidence that I am now assuming he has simply decided to leave me high and dry.
Now, I realize that he is, in part, just covering his own ass, not wanting to simply refill my prescription without seeing me. And I realize that it is my fault for forgetting to set something up a couple weeks ago. I take responsibility for that.
However, I think it's strange that he would simply leave me hanging, knowing that I am now forced to face stopping my medications without so much as the usual tapering-off under a doctor's supervision process that is generally highly recommended. Certainly he is aware of the position he has left me in.
I am, of course, going to switch to a different psychiatrist or PNP, but it could take me several weeks to get in to see one. I do not, at this time, have an internist or general practitioner. I haven't had health insurance all that long, I never really get sick, and I just haven't taken the time to find a personal doctor. I have, on two occasions, gone to the urgent care clinic for one reason or another. This is the extent of my medical relationships.
So my questions are:
1) Not that it matters at this point, but what are the ethical/legal implications here? Is he in the wrong? Or am I in the wrong for failing to meet my end of the deal and this is some sort of punishment?
2) Is there anyway I can get a refill on my prescription from elsewhere (the urgent care clinic??) until I can be seen by a psychiatric professional? Just so I don't have to suddenly stop only to restart, which isn't pleasant.
3) I am currently on day two of not taking my meds, and I'm feeling flu-ish, headache, tired, my muscles feel heavy. If I've gotta do the cold turkey thing, what else can I expect? How bad will this get? What will it be like having to go off for a couple weeks and then try and get back on? I like my meds - they've saved my life in many ways. I don't wish to stop taking them.
4) What do I do about work? If I continue to feel worse and more sick, I won't really be able to function well at the office. What do I say to my boss?
If it matters, I'm in Portland, OR. Mid-twenties male.
Thank you, hivemind.