Abilify, an Aripiprazole’s brand name, is an antidepressant and antipsychotic medication used in treating bipolar disorder, autism, major depression, and schizophrenia. Since an over-consumption of this drug can cause serious health problems like central nervous system depression in children and adults, many have asked how to stop taking Abilify.
On November 15, 2002 Abilify was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration as a treatment for schizophrenia; on October 1, 2004 for bipolar disorder; on
November 20, 2007 for major depressive illness; and on November 20, 2009 for autism. Otsuka developed Aripiprazole in Japan. Currently, Otsuka America and Bristol-Myers Squibb jointly market this drug.
There are important guidelines that must be followed in order to successfully stop in taking Abilify. Read below for the applicable strategies:
Ask your doctor first. It is not advisable to suddenly stop (cold turkey) your Abilify medication. Caring.com recommended that you talk to your doctor first. Although Abilify has no potential for abuse and is not addictive, your doctor’s advice is still necessary since the brain needs sufficient time to adjust before you wean yourself from this medication. Remember, there may be life-threatening reactions in your body after withdrawal. If there are revealing and bothersome symptoms after withdrawing, inform your doctor right away.
Understand the common withdrawal symptoms. Abilify withdrawal may cause symptoms of schizophrenia (like delusions or hallucinations), or symptoms of bipolar disorder (like depression or mania). Other usual symptoms include: nausea, dyskinesia, orthostasis, tachycardia, lightheadedness, diaphoresis, anxiety, and nervousness. Symptoms of long-lasting and complicated rebound insomnia are likely to occur too after withdrawing. To prevent all of these from happening, consult your doctor before stopping your Abilify treatment.
Gradual withdrawal is the best. Bipolar-disorder.emedtv.com clarified that abrupt withdrawal may cause a number of withdrawal symptoms. In other words, Abilify treatment must be discontinued gradually. In fact, the British National Formulation suggested the same when ceasing anti-psychotic medications in order to avoid rapid relapse and acute withdrawal syndrome.
Caring.com explained that how long you have been undergoing Abilify treatment will also determine how quick you can quit from it. For instance, if you have been taking 30 mg., your doctor will likely recommend 20 mg., 15 mg., 10 mg., and then 5 mg. until you are finally off from it. It may be useful to take a normal dose during the first week and then slowly decrease the dose as the weeks pass by.
Keep your patience. Since gradual withdrawal is highly recommended, you may get impatient along the process. That can affect your ability to stop Abilify treatment. However, weaning off properly in accordance with your doctor’s instructions will keep your body safe.
Start taking your new medication. As mentioned in No. 2, there are a number of withdrawal symptoms that can occur. To alleviate said symptoms, ask your doctor to prescribe another type of medication applicable to your condition. More importantly, avoid taking Abilify again.
The U.S. patent of Otsuka is set to expire by October 20, 2014. A patent challenge was filed by Teva Pharmaceuticals (previously known as the Barr Laboratories) in March, 2007 under the Hatch-Waxman Act. However, the case did not prosper as it was rejected by a district court in New Jersey last November 15, 2010.
Before switching to another form of medication, it is important that you follow the tips above on how to stop taking Abilify. Like all medicines, there are a number of side effects that may be experienced while using Abilify. Drugs.com enumerated the common side effects such as: dizziness, nausea, vomiting, headache, and drowsiness. Once you notice severe allergic reactions: unusual bruising, tiredness, speech changes, trouble in walking and swallowing, or abnormal thinking, call your doctor right away.