Lithium: Uses, Dosage, Price, Side Effects, Precautions & More

Lithium Composition – Lithium carbonate 300 MG
Manufactured By – Micro Labs Limited
Prescription – Prescription Required
Form – Tablet
Price – Rs 14.8
Quantity – 10 tablets in 1 strip

What is Lithium?

Lithium is a commonly used medication for the treatment of bipolar disorder and acute mania. Although effective, it has a narrow therapeutic window and is associated with toxicity.
Other variants and compositions

VariantComposition
Lithium – Sr TabletLithium carbonate 400 MG
Lithium 300Mg TabletLithium carbonate 300 MG
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Uses of Lithium

Lithium is mainly used for:

  • Mood stabilizer for bipolar disorder
  • Treats acute manic episodes
  • Prevents relapse
Also Read: Klonopin Uses 

How does Lithium work?

  • Lithium works by changing the balance of cyclic AMP and inositol triphosphate (IP3) inside the cell.
  • The exact mechanism of action of Lithium is poorly understood.
  • Lithium can act like a sodium ion and interact with some sodium channels, although these interactions probably have relation mainly to adverse, not therapeutic, effects.

How to take Lithium?

  • Lithium comes as a tablet, capsule, extended-release tablet, and a liquid to take by mouth.
  • Swallow the extended-release tablet of Lithium instead of chewing or crushing it.
  • Take the tablets along with food, two to three times a day.

Lithium Price In India

SpecificsLithium Price
Bottle of 11 ml DilutionRs 153
Bottle of 10 ml DilutionRs 98
Also Read: Losartan Price

Common Dosage

  • Lithium preparations are only effective with daily dosing that maintains adequate serum levels, and require serum level monitoring.
  • Most Lithium preparations currently used are tablets or capsules of Lithium carbonate in strengths of 150, 300, and 600 mg.
  • Slow-release preparations of Lithium carbonate also are available in strengths of 300 and 450 mg, as is lithium citrate syrup.

When to avoid Lithium?

  • If you are taking NSAIDs (ibuprofen, naproxen, indomethacin, nabumetone, diclofenac, ketorolac) with Lithium, blood concentration needs to be measured. NSAIDs reduce the kidney’s ability to eliminate Lithium and lead to elevated levels of the drug in the blood and side effects from the same.
  • ACE inhibitors (enalapril, Lisinopril, benazepril, quinapril, Ramip, when taken with Lithium, hium can increase the amount of Lithium in the body and lead to Lithium toxicity.
  • Combining Lithium with anti-depressants (citalopram, duloxetine and sertraline) can increase the risk of serotonin syndrome.
  • Using Lithium together with pregabalin may increase side effects such as dizziness, drowsiness, confusion, and difficulty concentrating.
  • Using escitalopram with Lithium can increase the risk of an irregular heart rhythm.

Precautions when taking Lithium

  • Since slow-release forms carry an increased risk for polyuria, their use should be limited to patients who experience GI side effects related to rapid absorption.
  • High Lithium levels can cause shakiness, muscle weakness, slurred speech, nausea or vomiting and drowsiness.
  • Less caffeine and salt can cause your Lithium level to increase; more of it can cause your Lithium level to decrease. Thus, it is advised to keep your salt and caffeine intake the same.

Side Effects of Lithium

Some of the reported side effects of Lithium are:

  • Tremor
  • Scotomas (seeing spots)
  • Leukocytosis
  • Headache
  • Weight gain
  • Hypothyroidism
  • polyuria (causes nephrogenic diabetes insipidus)
  • Thiazides (and other nephrotoxic agents) are implicated in lithium toxicity.
  • Thyrotoxicosis

Effects on organs?

  • On heart- irregular heartbeat, low blood pressure.
  • On stomach and intestine- decreased appetite, vomiting nausea, and diarrhea.
  • On skin- drying and thinning of the hair, exacerbation of psoriasis, loss of feeling in the skin, infections of the skin.
  • On muscles- tremor, muscle twitching.

Storage Requirements for Lithium

  • Keep it in a dry, airtight container.
  • Keep it away from direct heat or moisture.
  • Keep it out of reach of the children.

Pro Tips for taking Lithium

  • Lithium is usually taken two to three times daily with food.
  • Always take Lithium exactly as directed and go to your scheduled appointments.
  • Ensure you keep adequately hydrated while taking Lithium and maintain an adequate salt intake.
  • You will need to go for regular blood tests while you are taking Lithium.
  • A reduction in manic symptoms should be noticed within one to three weeks.

FAQs

Is Lithium addictive?

No, Lithium is not addictive.

Can I have Lithium with alcohol?

Alcohol can increase the nervous system side effects of Lithium such as dizziness, drowsiness, and difficulty concentrating.

Any particular food item to be avoided?

Consult your doctor regarding food items to avoid.

Can I have Lithium when pregnant?

No, use of Lithium during the first trimester is associated with the Ebstein anomaly of the tricuspid valve.

Can I have Lithium while feeding a baby?

No, Lithium has been detected in human breast milk and may risk the infants’ development.

Can I drive after taking Lithium?

Lithium can cause drowsiness and confusion, this may affect how you react while driving.

What happens if I overdose on Lithium?

An overdose of Lithium can be life-threatening and may include ataxia, cardiac arrhythmias, and coma.

What happens if I eat expired Lithium?

It is advised to not to take expired medicines.

What happens if I miss a dose of Lithium?

Take the next dose at the scheduled time. Never take more than the dose for a missed one.

Also read about other medicines: Humira 

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