Biphentin’s Second Chance

July 12, 2010

We have just returned from D’s check-up with his family doctor, Dr. M.

We hadn’t been back since D’s assessment at the ADD Clinic in June, so it was nice for D and I to bring her up to speed on the assessment and how we felt about the process.  D was also very proud to share the good news that his report card for this term had been one of his best yet (mostly Bs, with a few Cs). Yay!

I haven’t set up a follow-up appointment yet with the ADD Clinic to discuss treatment options. (I am still having some issues with the doctor and her methods to be honest, but more on this in a future post.) I am aware however that we need to keep trying to sort out the options for medication, until we find something that complements everything else we’re already doing. It’s just easier for us, at this point, to work with Dr. M because she has a really good understanding of our situation. She knows how committed we are to helping D and she knows how hard it was for us to even consider medications. Bottom line, I trust her and we work well together.

So far, we have tried Biphentin (20 mg) and Ritalin (5 mg).

Before trying Biphentin for the first time (back in May), I had done quite a bit of research on the possible benefits and side effects. One of the reasons I liked Biphentin was because so many parents recommended it. The main reason they preferred this drug to others was because it seemed to allow their child’s personality to flourish, while controlling the impulsivity and lack of focus. This appealed to me because D had a great personality and sense of humour. He is a curious child and loves to talk. I didn’t want to lose all this, just to be able to control the challenges better.

I also liked that Biphentin is a slow-released medication. D would only have to take one a day, in the morning, and then the condition would be managed with the minimal highs and lows can that happen with stimulants.

Anyhow, D’s reaction to the 20 mg dose of Biphentin was bad. Really bad. Scary bad. He was fine at first, but then the side effects started to appear. I won’t get into all the gory details, but I will say that at one point I found it so hard to look at him that I had to go cry in the bathroom of the Chapters store we were visiting. I wondered if I had made a horrible mistake even considering medication at all. He wasn’t much better as he came off the medication either. It made him weepy and anxious. It wasn’t a good day.

I contacted Dr. M right away and over the phone told her about D’s reaction to the medication. She said we could try a lower dose to see if that might be a better fit for him, but I was so spooked at that point that I didn’t want to hear anything about Biphentin EVER AGAIN. So we tried Ritalin. Just a little. Perhaps too little, because it didn’t do anything. D felt no different, and we saw no changes over the time he was on it.

So here we were, back in Dr. M’s office, talking next steps.

Well, you may have already figured out by the title of this post that we’ve decided to give Biphentin a second chance.

I know…I know…but believe me I have thought this through fully. I have been reading more about medications and their effects, both good and bad, to get a better understanding of what went wrong the first time. I have also been talking to our doctor and the doctor at the ADD Clinic and we feel ready to try it one more time.

I’m always advocating for second chances, so I’m taking my own advice.


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