Does your child's psychiatrist order any labs?

Discussion in 'General Parenting' started by rlsnights, Apr 19, 2011.

  1. rlsnights

    rlsnights New Member

    Just wondering, I don't hear this mentioned much on the board but perhaps folks wouldn't bring it up if everything is OK.

    If your difficult child is on psychiatric medications - does your psychiatrist or your pediatrician/pcp order any labs for your kiddo and if so which ones and how often?

  2. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    She needed it for Zyprexa and would have needed it for Tegretol if she'd been put on it (I opted for Trileptal to be tried first since it doesn't require blood draws). A lot of the medications used primarily for bi-polar need draws on a regular basis.
  3. smallworld

    smallworld Moderator

    Yes -- CBC, thyroid, liver function. There may be more I'm forgetting about. Every six months. EKG every year for my daughter who takes Zyprexa.
  4. jal

    jal Member

    Yes. Every 6 months for the Seroquel. difficult child had an EKG before going on Intuniv.
  5. timer lady

    timer lady Queen of Hearts

    Oh yes.....every 4 months. kt also has an EKG 2x per year (can't remember which medication).
  6. P-nut2004

    P-nut2004 New Member

    Initially PCP (who started medications) & first psychiatrist didn't run any tests before starting medications, now it is a NC Medicaid rule that kids on anti-psychotic medications have regular lab tests, our current psychiatrist has decided on every 60 days. We went for the first time last week and because she didn't know what to expect difficult child did ok until she saw the needle, next time I'm sure it will be a fight just getting her into the lab office. Any tips on making the process easier from parents who's kids already have regular testing would be great :)
  7. JJJ

    JJJ Active Member

    Our docs office requires annual labs for all patients on medications and annual ekgs for all patients on stims. They get really mad if you forget!
  8. Wiped Out

    Wiped Out Well-Known Member Staff Member

    My difficult child has his blood drawn weekly due to the Clozapine.
  9. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    difficult child 2 only had levels for Depakote checked until we got to a therapeutic level and symptoms were in control.
  10. Malika

    Malika Well-Known Member

    Don't know if you have them in the States, but my son is very scared of injections and our doctor has given me a special bandage to put on his arm, where the needle will go in, that he says will take away the pain. You have to put it on an hour before, apparently. Name on the box is EMLA patch and it is manufacutred by AstraZeneca.
  11. P-nut2004

    P-nut2004 New Member

    Thanks for the tip Malika, looks like they are lidocain patches & require a prescription so I will definitely ask our PCP or maybe difficult children urologist about getting some. difficult child hates getting blood drawn & has to have bloodwork for bladder & kidney issues too. If those numb well enough maybe she won't give me (and the poor nurses) such a fit.
  12. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    You get a tube of EMLA cream in the US. Thin layer in the area where needle will be an hour ahead of time and wrap with saran wrap. It is prescription only, so just ask doctor for it ahead of time. It took a few days for our pharmacy to get in the proper one. And one tube lasts a lot of applications.
  13. rlsnights

    rlsnights New Member

    Hi Jean -

    Does your difficult child 2 take carnitine supplements? If not and you don't know about this, you might ask his psychiatrist or peds about supplementing his diet with it. Especially if his diet is low in red meat and dairy products - the main dietary sources.

    Depakote strips carnitine from the liver. It is important in the conversion of fat into energy in the body. Most people can compensate for this but some people have inborn errors in their metabolism that reduce the degree to which their body can make/store/transport this essential amino acid.

    Sx of carnitine deficiency include lethargy, fatigue, weakness, confusion, muscle aches/stiffness.

    My psychiatrist had me supplementing with carnitine when I was on Depakote. I didn't notice a big change myself but she said there was a substantial number of people on Depakote who should probably be supplementing with it.

    One study of children 12 and younger (epileptics) on valproic acid found 35% had significant serum depletion of carnitine levels.

  14. KateM

    KateM Member

    I will second what Patricia wrote.

    My son is on Depakote. His ammonia level increased on this medication and he was taken off. For 2 years we tried different medications ( mood stabilizers and APs) but could not achieve the great effects Depakote had on mood regulation and decreasing aggressiveness.

    Through research, I learned about Carnitine. I asked my son's psychiatrist about this. He restarted the Depakote and placed him on the carnitine supplement (RX ,not the OCT). Depakote truly helps my son and the Carnitine keeps his ammonia level in check.
    Last edited: Apr 23, 2011
  15. shellyd67

    shellyd67 Active Member

    I insisted difficult child have an ekg and bloodwork prior to starting him on stims.
  16. HaoZi

    HaoZi Guest

    FYI on the carnitine - several muscle building drinks/shake mixes have more of it than can be healthy for many people (some of whom end up with nerve damage due to carnitine OD), but maybe for someone needing the supplementation it could be useful and maybe cheaper than a Rx if your insurance doesn't cover it. These tend to be heavy in whey (milk protein), so if they're on girlfriend/CF type diets it might not be the best option, but just wanted to toss it out there as an idea.
  17. gcvmom

    gcvmom Here we go again!

    Thanks for the tip on the carnitine. I never knew about that, and will look into it!
  18. TerryJ2

    TerryJ2 Well-Known Member

    I'm glad I saw this. Our psychiatrist hasn't ordered any, but the old psychiatrist was all into it. with-summer and camp coming up, I'll make sure the pediatrician orders a CBC and if we need an EKG.
  19. SomewhereOutThere

    SomewhereOutThere Well-Known Member

    When my son was on medications, absolutely.

    I have been on medications for many years and have a complete, total, thorough, etc. exam and blood workup every year. I am healthy, especially for my age (as of today...anything can change), but if I feel even a little sick, doctor will run labs on me.