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Using a digital scale to measure doses

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Hibari

Thank you Brass.   This makes it clear.

 

Because of how badly I am feeling from this last cut, I actually am contemplating up dosing and would definitely hold no matter what.  

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Rabe

Brassmonkey,

wondering if I ought to order a scale so that soon after my move I can start to slooooowly taper the viibryd which I think is causing lots of problems after I take it...about 4 hours or so after I am so agitate and it lasts till late evening.  Thank you.

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brassmonkey

Sounds like a good idea Rabe.  That way you can get settled into your new place and start when the time feel right and not have to wait to get supplies.

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Jesse12

I'm a bit confused. I'm tapering off 100mg Zoloft. I measured it on my scale and it's 3.03 mg (super accurate by .000mg. Know b/c I tested it with the buprenorphine I have to cut). Any way I round it off to 3mg because when I broke it in half, serrated, some of the capsule orange coating came off. I know it's not medication. 

My question is how do I break it so I get 90%? I used my pill cutter to cut the half more but it's crumbling.

On 9/10/2012 at 10:59 AM, Altostrata said:

She should

 

  • Empty a full Prozac capsule on the scale, note the weight. Example: 62.4mg (I have no idea how much the capsule contents weigh.)
  • Figure out her desired dosage as a proportion (percentage) of the full Prozac capsule dosage. Example: 39mg out of a 40mg capsule (39/40) = .975
  • Multiply the proportion times the weight. Example: .975 x 62.4mg = 60.84mg
  • Measure out 60.84mg as her dose

 

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Jesse12

I'm a bit confused. I'm tapering off 100mg Zoloft. I measured it on my scale and it's 3.03 mg (super accurate by .000mg. Know b/c I tested it with the buprenorphine I have to cut). Any way I round it off to 3mg because when I broke it in half, serrated, some of the capsule orange coating came off. I know it's not medication. 

My question is how do I break it so I get 90%? I used my pill cutter to cut the half more but it's crumbling.

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Jesse12
On 1/1/2012 at 3:38 PM, Altostrata said:

Important note when weighing tablets and capsules: They contain filler

You will find, when you weigh a tablet or capsule, that the weight in milligrams is more that the dosage in milligrams. A 25mg tablet of Effexor weighs more than 25mg.

25mg means there's 25mg of active ingredient in the tablet, it's not the weight of the tablet.

All tablets and capsules have filler in them, that's why they weigh more on the scale.

Use a percentage, as Jole does up above, to calculate how much to take by weight.

For example, if you want to take 10mg of Effexor, it would be 40% of a 25mg tablet by weight (10 divided by 25 = .40 or 40%). Multiply the percentage by the weight of the whole tablet. If the tablet weighs 100mg before you cut it, you would want to 40% of it, or 40mg by weight.

A lot of people would crush the tablet into powder so they can measure these fine gradations in weight.

Nice big gelatin capsules (sizes 00 or 0) will help you deal with the powder.  Comparison picture with measurements  The capsule size doesn't have to be the same as your initial capsule of medication. Unless you have the fingers of a pygmy loris,pygmy loris.png it's easier to handle the larger capsule sizes and get the powder into them.

I'm sorry (must be fibro fog) but this is confusing me

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brassmonkey

Hi Jesse-- making up a dose can be pretty frustrating until you get the hang of it, but you're really close.  Trying to break a tablet and hit a specific weight is really, really hard. Many people find it easier to break the tablet and then carve off a little bit with a razor blade or sharp knife or nail file until they get the right weight. Personally I crushed the tablets and weighted out the desired amount and put it into empty gel caps I got at the health food store.  That was a lot easier than cutting and filing.

 

I don't see zoloft listed as a current drug in your signature, would you please update things.

 

Brass

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Jesse12

Thanks for the info. I purchased gel caps for when I got to lower dosages.

 

I'm going to check my signature because I'm sure I added it when I became a member. Thanks for letting me know :-) 

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Jesse12
On 11/29/2014 at 12:38 AM, ladybug said:

If you want to use a scale to measure your doses you need to find the average weight of the pill you are using. I weighed a whole bottle of pills (30), then added up all the weights and then divided that number by 30 to find the average weight of one 20mg pill, which for me was .350g. I have been using this average weight for my entire taper down to where I am at now 5.9mg. Let's say you are using 10mg pills that weigh an average of .150g. 5mg would then weigh .075g. If you want to reduce by 10% then take a calculator and type in .075-10% and that will give you the weight you need to shave down to. It sounds complicated but is really easy once you get the hang of it. I've been doing the scale method for years with no issues, and I am pretty sensitive.

 

26 minutes ago, brassmonkey said:

Hi Jesse-- making up a dose can be pretty frustrating until you get the hang of it, but you're really close.  Trying to break a tablet and hit a specific weight is really, really hard. Many people find it easier to break the tablet and then carve off a little bit with a razor blade or sharp knife or nail file until they get the right weight. Personally I crushed the tablets and weighted out the desired amount and put it into empty gel caps I got at the health food store.  That was a lot easier than cutting and filing.

 

I don't see zoloft listed as a current drug in your signature, would you please update things.

 

Brass

Just checked my signature. It's the 2nd medication on my list

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brassmonkey

Okay, to me it just looked like you had been on it for a bit and then changed it out for a different drug.

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Centime

Would it work to weigh a Paxil tablet on a digital scale, then use a nail file to remove 10%, using the scale to measure exactly? And further remove small percentages as my taper progresses? Thank you!

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brassmonkey

That's one of the typical ways to do it.  The biggest problem is hitting the weight exactly, it can be really easy to take off too much,then you have to start over with another tablet. It's also hard to save the "waste".  In the beginning there isn't a lot but the further a person decreases the more there is so you'll soon be getting a "free dose" each week. Many of us have found that crushing the tablets, weighing the power and putting in into gel caps is the easiest way to go.

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Centime

Thank you again. 

 

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Hibari

I've been weighing my pills over the past few months and cutting them to make a measurement of 8.8.

 

The Gemni Scale is definitely sensitive but I calibrate it each time I start.

 

My 5 mg pills weigh between 101mg -104mg.   Currently I weigh each one and then caculate what I need to based on the weight.

For example, if the pill is 102mg, I divide by 5, which gets me to 20.4 and then I multiply that by 3.8, which gets me to 77.52 and I round that up to 78.

If the pill is 103 mgs, I divide by 5 and that me to 20.6 and then I multiply that by 3.8, which gets me to 78.28 and I try to hove between 78 and 79

 

I then take one 5mgs pill and the broken off pieces that I have weighed.

 

Do you think this is accurate enough?  Of should I weigh 10 pills,  get the total and then divide by 10?  I did just buy gel caps.

 

H

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brassmonkey

For working with the gelcaps the best thing to do is take the average weight of a bunch of pills (10 or more) and work with that.  Grind up several pills at once and then just measure out the calculated weight from the supply pile.  this will be more accurate in the long run than trying to calculate each individual dose.  When you change over to doing it this way treat it like you would do any taper making a change in the way you're measuring things counts as a dose change event because there will be a very slight change in the dose weight and the new delivery system so you need to  allow things to stabilize.

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Hibari

You weigh all 10 pills at one time, yes? 

 

 

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brassmonkey

and divide the total weight by 10 to get the average.  Or you could weight each one individually and add then together and divide by ten.  Weighing them all at once is easier.

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Hibari

Thank you!  The pills will be easy to crush as they are the dissolvable ones. 

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Hibari
On 8/21/2018 at 9:46 PM, brassmonkey said:

For working with the gelcaps the best thing to do is take the average weight of a bunch of pills (10 or more) and work with that.  Grind up several pills at once and then just measure out the calculated weight from the supply pile.  this will be more accurate in the long run than trying to calculate each individual dose.  When you change over to doing it this way treat it like you would do any taper making a change in the way you're measuring things counts as a dose change event because there will be a very slight change in the dose weight and the new delivery system so you need to  allow things to stabilize.

I am definitely feel the dose change and am very ill at this time.  I'm hoping this levels out soon.  Taking part of my medication in crushed up powder and the other part in a pill form.  Don't think I could handle all powder at this time. 

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carefulprayerful

Question about a digital scale (0.1 mg scale)

 

The minimum weight on this scale is 10 mg.  I am thinking about what I would do if I wanted to measure less than 10 mg of powder.  For example, putting a pill weighing 114 mg on the dish and then adding 1 mg of powder.  So the weight on the scale would be 115 mg.  Then I would just throw away the pill and take 1 mg powder.  That way I could measure 1 mg of powder even though the minimum weight on the scale is 10 mg.

 

Is there anything wrong with doing this?

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carefulprayerful

Actually I just tried it, and it is difficult to handle such small amounts of powder.

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primekittycat

Hi all, wanted to post here since I've been having some scale headaches. I have used the Gemini-20 scale since I began tapering over 3 years ago. Now that I'm down to about 7mg Effexor per day, it's getting harder to get my scale to be consistent.  I can weigh the exact same beads and have it to come to 0.018mg - 0.021mg.  This is not helpful when my cuts are now about 0.001mg each (decreasing from 0.022mg to 0.021mg, for example).  I have begun to not only weigh, but count the beads for better consistency.  I have tried compounding before but that requires me to switch to Effexor IR and my body did not react well to not having XR.  Any thoughts from others once they got to low doses? 

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Alanmane
6 hours ago, primekittycat said:

Hola a todos, quería publicar aquí ya que he tenido algunos dolores de cabeza de escala. He usado la escala Gemini-20 desde que comencé a disminuir hace más de 3 años. Ahora que he bajado a aproximadamente 7 mg de Effexor por día, cada vez es más difícil lograr que mi escala sea consistente. Puedo pesar exactamente las mismas cuentas y tener que llegar a 0.018 mg - 0.021 mg. Esto no es útil cuando mis cortes son ahora de aproximadamente 0,001 mg cada uno (disminuyendo de 0,022 mg a 0,021 mg, por ejemplo). He comenzado no solo a pesar, sino a contar las cuentas para una mejor consistencia. He intentado componer antes, pero eso me obliga a cambiar a Effexor IR y mi cuerpo no reaccionó bien al no tener XR. ¿Algún pensamiento de los demás una vez que llegaron a dosis bajas? 

7 mg, wow! That is very little, I am 55mg from 150mg and it is not very difficult. I do not imagine arriving where you are, until I am out of effexor and without depression I will not be able to believe it. What advice could you give me to improve my experience? I have been 3 years in effexo

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ChessieCat
8 hours ago, primekittycat said:

Now that I'm down to about 7mg Effexor per day, it's getting harder to get my scale to be consistent. 

 

I suggest you check out this topic:  Tips for tapering off Effexor (venlafaxine)

 

And have you read this topic (using digital scales) from the beginning?

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primekittycat
16 hours ago, ChessieCat said:

 

I suggest you check out this topic:  Tips for tapering off Effexor (venlafaxine)

 

And have you read this topic (using digital scales) from the beginning?

 

Thanks Chessie, I have and got some good tips. I also just re-read the Effexor tips since it had been a while. I was lucky enough to find a compounding pharmacist that has dealt with this a lot and was willing to make me pills at say, 6.9mg.  But, I was having issues taking 2 IR pills per day versus 1 XR.  It seemed like my levels were bouncing around all day and my brain was too used to taking XR. I'm very sensitized to it unfortunately.

 

Anyway, I think I will keep doing my method of weighing plus counting as a double check. It sucks, but I knew it was going to get difficult at this low level. It will be nice once I'm down to say, 5 beads. 

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ChessieCat
5 hours ago, primekittycat said:

But, I was having issues taking 2 IR pills per day versus 1 XR.

 

To split your dose it may work better if you move one dose by 1 hour each day.

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meagain

Hi Everyone,

 

Ok so am i going thru several posts to figure this out my self and not bother anyone, but am confused. Can someone please help. I just got the Gemini scale and am using BrassMonkeys method of using one of the weights (10gr) on the scale then tare it out to 0.000, using the (g) setting. I then place one of my 20mg Paxil tablets carefully on top of the weight which is centered and get and average of 0.241g. 

I want to taper by 10% looking at so many posts has me confused can someone please help me. i have been eyeballing my 18mg by using a razor-blade, but it hasn't been working great, so i got the scale to hopefully be closer.

 

Currently for the past 2 or so weeks weening off 20mg paxil at 10% each month. I need help with what the scale should read for 18mg, once i get the hang of it, i promise i won't bother anyone anymore. 

 

Thank-you

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brassmonkey

If you take the average weight of 10 of the pills you'll find that its going to be 0.240g this would also be referred to as 240mgpw (milligrams pill weight).  The easiest way to calculate your reduced dose is to multiply the average pill weight by 0.9. which will give you 216mgpw.  This will correspond with a dose of 18mgai (milligrams active ingredient) which is what you are looking for.  So weigh 0.216 on the scale and you'll be good to go.

 

The next time you want to reduce start with your current dose weight which will be 216 and multiply that by 0.9 which will give a dose weight of 195mgpw.  Then keep going with the similar calculations for each new dose.

 

BTW it's never a bother for us to help calculate a dose, so if in doubt ask.

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ChessieCat

BrassMonkey beat me to posting but I'll post anyway because I've broken it down which might help you to understand the concept.

 

active ingredient in a tablet is abbreviated mgai

pill weight of tablet abbreviated mgpw

 

20 mgai = 240 mgpw = 0.240 gpw (what it reads on the scale)

 

To make a 10% reduction you multiply the current dose by 0.9 so you would multiply all figures by 0.9

 

20 mgai x 0.9  =  18 mgai

240 mgpw x 0.9  =  216 mgpw

0.240 gpw x 0.9  =  0.216 gpw (what it reads on the scale)

 

Edited by ChessieCat

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meagain

You guys are the BEST!, thank-you doing it right now, thanks again this makes it much easier.

 

Another question if it's off by a bit is that ok? example. one tablet .216   next tablet .217, next tablet .215?  I turn the scale off and on a couple times to make sure, I'm also taring it out with a 10G weight in the center then place the tablet on top of the weight which is in the center of the plate.

 

Thanks again!

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meagain
4 hours ago, brassmonkey said:

If you take the average weight of 10 of the pills you'll find that its going to be 0.240g this would also be referred to as 240mgpw (milligrams pill weight).  The easiest way to calculate your reduced dose is to multiply the average pill weight by 0.9. which will give you 216mgpw.  This will correspond with a dose of 18mgai (milligrams active ingredient) which is what you are looking for.  So weigh 0.216 on the scale and you'll be good to go.

 

The next time you want to reduce start with your current dose weight which will be 216 and multiply that by 0.9 which will give a dose weight of 195mgpw.  Then keep going with the similar calculations for each new dose.

 

BTW it's never a bother for us to help calculate a dose, so if in doubt ask.

Thankyou Brassmonkey!  This makes more sense now, on the second month 216 x 0.9= 194.4 I'm guessing always round it off to the highest? So my 3rd month would be 195 x 0.9= 175.5 or (176mgai) then 4th month 176 x 0.9=158.4 or (159mgai) etc.

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meagain
4 hours ago, ChessieCat said:

BrassMonkey beat me to posting but I'll post anyway because I've broken it down which much help you to understand the concept.

 

active ingredient in a tablet is abbreviated mgai

pill weight of tablet abbreviated mgpw

 

20 mgai = 240 mgpw = 0.240 gpw (what it reads on the scale)

 

To make a 10% reduction you multiply the current dose by 0.9 so you would multiply all figures by 0.9

 

20 mgai x 0.9  =  18 mgai

240 mgpw x 0.9  =  216 mgpw

0.240 gpw x 0.9  =  0.216 gpw (what it reads on the scale)

 

Thankyou ChessieCat.

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ChessieCat
6 minutes ago, meagain said:

Thankyou Brassmonkey!  This makes more sense now, on the second month 216 x 0.9= 194.4 I'm guessing always round it off to the highest? So my 3rd month would be 195 x 0.9= 175.5 or (176mgai) then 4th month 176 x 0.9=158.4 or (159mgai) etc.

 

Yes, always round up, then make the next reduction calculated on the rounded up dose.

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matt7777

Hi,

I purchased the Gemini-20 scale. I am trying to taper down by 8% from a 25mg Seroquel capsule. When I put the Seroquel capsule on the scale, I get readings that vary from .065 to .063 to .066 etc, every time I weigh the same capsule! So I am wondering if I should just take an average of say 5 readings for that capsule?

 

Also, when I weigh the capsule, should I close the lid of the Gemini-20 scale in order to protect the scale from any air movement?

 

After I take the average of the five weighings of the Seroquel 25mg tab, then I multiply that number by 92% to come up with my new target capsule size. Then I start shaving away with a razor blade. I try to weigh the capsule (after I shave) five times to see where I am relative to the target weight.

 

My issue is that every time I weigh the capsule, I get a different reading. So does taking the average of say five readings, make sense?

 

Thanks!

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Rabe

Hi Mat....Im glad you asked this as I am encountering the same thing with my gemini scale....I can take the same capsule and weigh it different times and it weighs differently...not as off as the compounding but I have wondered about it.  Hoping to get an answer....take care!!

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brassmonkey

Matt-- those readings are right in line with where they should be. There is going to be some minor fluctuation in the readings. When it comes down to it 1mg is a very small amount and there are any number of thing that can cause the reading to vary that small amount. Any air currents will do it, any vibrations of the table, dirty hands, all of them can throw off the reading by a little.  The thing is it doesn't really matter.  The active ingredient in the capsule is a very small percentage of the total weight. Generally the weight of the active ingredient is about 5% of the total weight and frequently less.  So if your measured weights vary by 1mg the weight of the active ingredient may vary by 0.05mg. You need an extremely expensive scale and a laboratory to measure that small.  When it comes to doing a taper that amount doesn't even count.

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