#1 How get effective adult ADHD treatment in Germany with history of rare seizures von Nea 12.06.2015 17:10

How get effective adult ADHD treatment in Germany with history of rare seizures

TLDR; Psychiatrist won't prescribe medications I need because I had a hypoglycaemic seizure and they won't risk it being epilepsy. What to do?

Apologies for writing this in English. I am from outside of Europe and my German is still not good enough that it works well enough for me to write in. I would like to explain my situation, and ask if anyone has had similar experiences and could offer any advice on how they were able to resolve it?

My main problem is ADHD - as a teen, handling my daily life and rhythm with school, work, social life etc. was always super chaotic and stressful because of how easily my mind wanders and how hard it is for me to build and keep habits. After moving (before coming here) and signing up with a new psych, she prescribed me (Metylphenidat) and it really helped super well - all those problems quickly became possible to handle, and it has stayed that way since for five years. When I moved to Germany last year to take up a job (which will have me here for another 3-4 years at least), I had somehow assumed it would be no problem to get the same treatment while here, because I could see my medication was also being prescribed and sold in Germany. Unfortunately, it seems like I was at least partly wrong.

I also have some other problems – I sometimes get hypoglycaemic after long days or long nights, in which case I sometimes have mild seizures. This happened a while ago while visiting a friend, and since they didn't know what it was, they called an ER team which took me in for observation, after which as usual I was fine again after an hour or so.

Unfortunately, from her description of the symptoms (blackout, shaking, unresponsive etc.) the ER doctor interpreted this as an epileptic episode, despite the fact I have no history like that and that similar things can and do happen at low blood sugar, both for me and for others I know. So in my medical record now, it was listed as one, and so when later that month I talked to the German neurologist I had been remitted to in order to get an ADHD diagnosis and a prescription for my medication, the neurologist told me that since I have any history whatsoever of anything epilepsy-like, no German physician would ever prescribe me any stimulant-type medication, even if I meet all the requirements for an ADHD diagnosis.

This really hit me hard and got me quite depressed for a while, because I really want to stay here for the job I got, but I also know I won't be able to keep focus enough to hold it down unless I am medicated. I tried for many years without it, and I know from how I respond to it that I need proper medication to be able to function something like a normal person. I realize of course doctors can get sued unless they follow all the rules, but from my home country I know several people who have real, bona fide epilepsy and still are prescribed Ritalin or Adderall for their ADHD as a matter of course. And I am pretty sure (also from talking with my GP) that I don't actually have epilepsy per se.

Hence this post. Has anyone experienced anything like this? Either problems (neurologist refusing to prescribe effective medication despite clear ADHD because of history of seizures), no problems (neurologist prescribing it despite such history, which I could then tell my neurologist about), or solutions (ways in which you got the meds you needed for your ADHD even though you initially were told you couldn't becase of perceived seizure risk)? Any experience or advice would be welcome!

I am in the Rhein-Main area but travel a lot for work, so in principle I suppose I could find a neurologist elsewhere (though it feels weird to go "doctor shopping") if there are those who don't share the ideas of the one I went to. Again, I know I need some sort of medication like this to function, I tried all sorts of therapies and training and while they helped, I could never keep them up unless when I was medicated. I'm not going to go looking for sordid black-market vendors for the meds I need (and smuggling illicit substances myself is really not an option), but in the worst case I may actually have to move back home rather than face the very real risk of health issues spiralling out of control when I am too unfocussed to see to them the way I need to. Again, any advice helps, specific or general!

Best wishes,


#2 RE: How get effective adult ADHD treatment in Germany with history of rare seizures von FaVe 12.06.2015 21:16

Dear Nea!

Sorry for my English.

Here in our Forum we can't write names or adresses of doctors or therapists.

But on the Homepage of ADHS Deutschland e.V. you can find Self-help groups. There you can get informations about this things.

Können wir Dir evtl. auf Deutsch antworten und du schreibst Englisch? Mir fällt es sehr schwer, zu ADHS auf Englisch zu schreiben und noch gute Tipps zu geben. Vielleicht kann das jemand anders doch besser!

Grüße FaVe

#3 RE: How get effective adult ADHD treatment in Germany with history of rare seizures von Nea 17.06.2015 23:57

FaVe: Thanks for this suggestion! :)

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