Sunday, 13 October 2013


My daughter’s wobbly bike ride through life hit some serious potholes earlier this year.

We’d had bent spokes before, and the odd puncture, but nothing like this.

She started suffering bouts of destabilising sleeplessness. In the worst throes of it, she span out of control, with jittery and agitated long nights of freewheeling, followed by days where pedalling was too much effort.

The medical investigations started. An MRI ruled out anything like swelling on the brain. An EEG, the results of which took an age to turn up, has finally confirmed that she isn’t suffering seizures.

In the meantime, a neuro-psychiatrist diagnosed the problem as a mood disorder on the spectrum of bi-polar. Lamotrigine, a mood-stabiliser, was prescribed.

Now, two months later, the bike is back on track. It still won’t travel in a straight line, but then it never did. Its rider is happy again. Fitting the stabilisers has brought our daughter back to us: with all her funny little ways, her shy smiles, her meandering chats and occasionally clunky gear changes. 

She’ll never pass the drugs tests for the Tour de France, though.

Charles Wright - Ninety Day Cycle People

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  1. For someone competing for the Tour de France and in medical need for a mood stabilizer like Lamotrigine, an authorization of therapeutic usage can be requested by a doctor.
    Alain Bernard, the Olympic champion of swimming, suffers from ADHD and was granted this authorization for the ADHD medication.

    Just FYI

  2. Ha! That's great! Are they allowed to compete on tricycles, though? And she definitely doesn't do hills, so this could be another stumbling block ;-)

    1. There are paralympic games for people with disabilities. Not sure about the tricycle on the Tour de France.
      Tour de France is also a men competition....

  3. Good news that she is doing so well! Lovely to hear. :)

  4. Am i glad i found your blog ! You put into (very succinct )words much of what i struggle to say.I thank you for it.(even though I've yet to devour the archives).My daughter who has PWS also had a disconcerting episode a few years ago and we spent her 18th birthday in A+E trying to get some help.After 6 fruitless ,axious (and very spaced -out) hours there, her own GP came up with the goods.She now takes Citalopram and it's a sanity -saver(quite literally,as she was not only not sleeping,not eating,and seeing dead people, she didn't recognize me either.) Within 30 mins of the first dose, she dozed for the first time in 5 days,ate on awakening,and I had my daughter back,The psychosis she suffered is apparently quite common to those who have Maternal Uniparental Disomy. X Beth

  5. Thanks, Beth. Yes, I understand psychosis is more prevalent in those with mUPD, but those with deletion PWS are also still more likely than the average person to have problems in this area. I'm so glad the medication has worked for you, too. "I've got my daughter back" is the most wonderful phrase in the English language, isn't it?