What is Lithium Carbonate?

Category: Prescription Drugs

Most popular types: Lithium Carbonate ER Lithobid XR Priadel Show all

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Lithium carbonate is used to treat and prevent episodes of mania in people with bipolar disorder (manic depressive disorder). Lithium is in a class of medications called antimanic agents, which work by decreasing abnormal activity in the brain.

Reported purpose & perceived effectiveness
Purpose Patients Evaluations Perceived Effectiveness
Bipolar Disorder 842 473
Bipolar I Disorder 356 209
Bipolar II Disorder 346 206
ALS (Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis) 301 124
Major Depressive Disorder 63 51
Cluster Headaches 27 26

Show all 84 reasons taken


  • Major
  • Moderate
  • Slight
  • None
  • Can't tell

Side effects

Side effects as an overall problem

Side effects as an overall problem
Severity Evaluations
Severe 241
Moderate 266
Mild 242
None 202

Commonly reported side effects and conditions associated with Lithium Carbonate

Side effect Patients
Tremor in hands 117
Weight gain 89
Nausea 54
Thirst 46
Diarrhea 43
Excessive thirst (polydipsia) 38

Show all 328 reported side effects

Dosages

Based on patients currently taking Lithium Carbonate

Dosage Patients
300 mg twice daily 36
300 mg daily 35
900 mg daily 30
600 mg daily 28
600 mg twice daily 25
300 mg three times daily 19
150 mg daily 12
1,200 mg daily 11
450 mg twice daily 9
150 mg twice daily 6

See all 55 dosages

Why patients stopped taking Lithium Carbonate

Multiple reasons could be selected

Reason Patients
Side effects too severe 445
Did not seem to work 342
Doctor's advice 240
Other 146
Personal research 70
Course of treatment ended 29
Expense 18
Change in health plan coverage 8
See all 905 patients who’ve stopped taking Lithium Carbonate

Duration

Currently taking Lithium Carbonate

Duration Patients
Less than 1 month 2
1 - 6 months 22
6 months - 1 year 45
1 - 2 years 28
2 - 5 years 58
5 - 10 years 72
10 years or more 67

Stopped taking Lithium Carbonate

Duration Patients
Less than 1 month 164
1 - 6 months 240
6 months - 1 year 168
1 - 2 years 122
2 - 5 years 127
5 - 10 years 39
10 years or more 51
Adherence
Adherence Evaluations
Always 709
Usually 150
Sometimes 29
Never taken as prescribed 63
Burden
Burden Evaluations
Very hard to take 81
Somewhat hard to take 141
A little hard to take 156
Not at all hard to take 573
Cost per month
Cost per month Evaluations
$200+ 8
$100-199 1
$50-99 13
$25-49 39
< $25 481
Not specified 409

What people switch to and from

Patients started taking Lithium Carbonate after stopping:

Treatment Patients
Lamotrigine (Lamictal) 39
Quetiapine (Seroquel) 36
Aripiprazole (Abilify) 17
Divalproex sodium (Depakote) 17
Fluoxetine (Prozac) 7

Show all 35 treatments patients report switching from

Patients stopped taking Lithium Carbonate and switched to:

Treatment Patients
Lamotrigine (Lamictal) 47
Divalproex sodium (Depakote) 22
Aripiprazole (Abilify) 15
Quetiapine (Seroquel) 15
Carbamazepine (Tegretol) 7

Show all 36 treatments patients report switching to

Last updated:

90 patient evaluations for Lithium Carbonate

735 members have decided to share their profiles only with other members of PatientsLikeMe.

COOPERATI
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COOPERATI
Gender: M
Data Quality: 2 stars
Depression: 3
Mania: 2
Emotional: 4
Anxiety: 2
Compulsion: 2
External Stress: Overwhelming
43 M
Function: Low
Distress: High
I am: vb
I have:
Schizophrenia

See COOPERATI's full Lithium Carbonate history

May 9, 2017 (Started Mar 01, 2010)

  • Effectiveness
    Slight (for Suicidal thoughts or urges)
  • Side effects
    None
  • Adherence
    Sometimes
  • Burden
    A little hard to take
Dosage: 300 mg All the time (24/7)

Dec 4, 2010 (Started Mar 01, 2010)

  • Effectiveness
    Major (for Suicidal thoughts or urges)
  • Side effects
    Moderate
  • Adherence
    Usually
  • Burden
    Somewhat hard to take
Dosage: 300 mg All the time (24/7)

  • 0 helpful marks
Jerry123
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Jerry123
Gender: M
Data Quality: 3 stars
Depression: 3
Mania: 1
Emotional: 2
Anxiety: 3
Compulsion: 3
External Stress: Severe
53 M
Function: Low
Distress: Moderate
I am: n
I have:
Bipolar I

See Jerry123's full Lithium Carbonate history

Dec 30, 2016 (Started Oct 31, 2007)

  • Effectiveness
    Slight (for Treat my mood condition(s))
  • Effectiveness
    Slight (for Bipolar I Disorder)
  • Effectiveness
    Slight (for Bipolar Disorder)
  • Side effects
    Moderate (Drug ineffective, Shaky hands)
  • Adherence
    Usually
  • Burden
    A little hard to take
Dosage: 300 mg Daily
Cost: < $25 monthly
Side effects: Shaky hands, Drug ineffective

Aug 16, 2012 (Started Oct 31, 2007)

  • Effectiveness
    Major (for Treat my mood condition(s))
  • Effectiveness
    Moderate (for Bipolar Disorder)
  • Effectiveness
    Moderate (for Bipolar I Disorder)
  • Side effects
    Moderate (Drug ineffective, Shaky hands)
  • Adherence
    Always
  • Burden
    Very hard to take
Dosage: 300 mg Daily
Advice & Tips: Weight gain, thyroid problems, low energy, liver test, great for me when needed maybe not needed
Cost: < $25 monthly
Side effects: Shaky hands, Drug ineffective

May 27, 2010 (Started Oct 31, 2007)

  • Effectiveness
    Major (for Treat my mood condition(s))
  • Side effects
    Moderate (Drug ineffective, Shaky hands)
  • Adherence
    Always
  • Burden
    Somewhat hard to take
Dosage: 900 mg Daily
Cost: < $25 monthly
Side effects: Shaky hands, Drug ineffective

  • 0 helpful marks
sparkifox
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sparkifox
Gender: F
Data Quality: 3 stars
Depression: 2
Mania: 0
Emotional: 2
Anxiety: 1
Compulsion: 1
External Stress: Severe
31 F
Function: Moderate
Distress: Low
I am: vb
I have:
C-PTSD

See sparkifox's full Lithium Carbonate history

Dec 11, 2015 (Started Oct 28, 2014)

  • Effectiveness
    None (for Major Depressive Disorder)
  • Effectiveness
    None (for Agitation)
  • Side effects
    Mild (Mood swings)
  • Adherence
    Usually
  • Burden
    A little hard to take
Dosage: 600 mg Daily

  • 0 helpful marks
Last updated:
Showing 3 of 90 patient evaluations for Lithium Carbonate