I live near a major highway on a mini-farm with chickens, ducks and goats. I have a domestic partner and two wonderful sons.
I now love to sit on my porch, watching the chickens peck the ground and enjoying the sunshine. But, not too long ago, I used to sit on this same porch and think how easy it would be to walk into traffic.
I suffer from Major Depressive Disorder and was diagnosed around age 19. In my 20s, I married a man who was physically abusive and subsequently divorced him. I remarried, but he too became verbally and emotionally abusive.
During my depressive episodes, my kids would describe me as a “zombie.” I knew I needed help.
Finding the GeneSight Test
In my 20-year battle with depression, I felt like my previous doctors kept throwing medicines at me. None were working. Or, if they had a slight improvement in my symptoms, I would have to deal with awful side effects. So, my doctors would prescribe another medication to counter the side effects.
At one point, I was taking nine different medications. I was on so many medicines that I literally would fall asleep during conversations. I was not functioning at all – and when I tried to function, I would end up in tears.
When I moved in with my partner in a new place, I started with a new psychiatrist. After a year, he suggested that I take the GeneSight Psychotropic test. I had never heard about the test, but after he explained it, I was excited and was like: “let’s do it!” After years of having medications thrown at me, it seems like a more logical, scientific approach.
I took the GeneSight test that day. When we got the results back, my psychiatrist reviewed them with me. I found them easy to understand. Out of the nine medications, five of them were not genetically compatible with me. We decided to ween off five of the medications – including one I had taken on and off for 20 years and never really seemed to help. We then added a new medication.
Improving My Score
It took a few weeks, but I started functioning better. When I was on my previous medication regime, I felt like only functioned at a 50 percent level. Now, two years later, I am taking genetically optimal medications and I feel like I function at 90 percent – quite an improvement for me!
I feel phenomenal. I feel alive. I feel hopeful, enthusiastic and productive. My partner no longer has to call me to tell me to get out of bed, brush my teeth, etc. I can get up and do things. I can help my kids and do laundry – stuff that seemed impossible before. There are still tough days, but now I know that it is just a tough day, it’s not hopeless.
There are not enough good things to say about the GeneSight test. It saved my life. I tell people who are suffering from depression: “If you are having a hard time with your medications, take the GeneSight test. It was the best thing I have ever done for my mental health.”
This story is one patient’s personal experience. Other patients may not have the same experience or outcome. Do not make any changes to your current medications or dosing without consulting your healthcare provider.
The GeneSight test must be ordered by and used only in consultation with a healthcare provider who can prescribe medications. As with all genetic tests, the GeneSight test results have limitations and do not constitute medical advice. The test results are designed to be just one part of a larger, complete patient assessment, which would include proper diagnosis and consideration of your medical history, other medications you may be taking, your family history, and other factors.
If you are a healthcare provider and interested in learning more about the GeneSight test, please call us at 855.891.9415. If you are a patient, please talk with your doctor to see if the GeneSight test may be helpful.