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Abilify - Aripiprazole Oral Side Effects Uses Interactions Warnings Misuse Overdose & More All you need to know

December 23, 2021

Abilify is one of the brand names for Aripiprazole. It is classified as an antipsychotic drug. These are medicines that are mainly used to treat psychosis, particularly in schizophrenia and also in a variety of other psychotic illnesses, such as paranoid schizophrenia.

It can also be consumed in conjunction with other medications for addressing depression.

This medicine may also help you to have fewer hallucinations and increase your ability to concentrate. It encourages you to think more critically and optimistically about yourself.

Gaining weight, headaches, akathisia (inability to stand still), sleeplessness, and gastrointestinal symptoms such as constipation, nausea, and diarrhea, as well as drowsiness, are all common adverse effects in people who take the medication.

Abilify - Aripiprazole Oral Side Effects Uses Interactions Warnings

Aripiprazole was first authorized for therapeutic use in the United States in 2002, and it is now available worldwide.

With much more than 7 million prescriptions dispensed in 2018, it ranked 101st on the list of most frequently prescribed medications in the United States.

Generic Name: Aripiprazole

Brand Names:

  • Abilify
  • Raylify
  • Aripa
  • Arizole
  • Aripa
  • Adablizer
  • Restona
  • Aripip
  • Biponil
  • Zedan
  • Arzip
  • Mactril

Indications for Abilify - Aripiprazole

Abilify is approved to treat the following health conditions:

  • Schizophrenia (A chronic brain disorder)
  • Tourette's syndrome
  • Bipolar I, characterized by manic and mixed episodes.
  • Major depressive disorder
  • Apraxia I (A condition in which a person has difficulty moving)
  • Autism (A developmental disability that affects a person's ability to communicate)
  • Mood swings, irritability, aggravation
  • Disorders associated with substance abuse
  • Psychosis (A medical condition in which individuals lose touch with reality and believe things that do not exist in the actual world)
  • Dementia
  • Delirium

Mechanism of Action of Abilify - Aripiprazole

As previously stated, Abilify is one of the brand names for the medication Aripiprazole. This indicates that the two drugs have the same mechanism of action as one another. Let's have a look at how Aripiprazole works in a nutshell.

Aripiprazole is a medication that belongs to a family of medications known as antipsychotics. It is not understood how aripiprazole works in detail. However, it is believed to assist in the regulation of the number of specific chemicals present in your brain.

Chemical regulation and management are very essential since even a small imbalance may have a significant impact on the proper functioning of a bodily component.

Aripiprazole aids in the management of your disease by restoring the levels of substances such as dopamine and serotonin in your body. That is precisely how Abilify works as well.

Dosage

Abilify should be taken precisely as recommended by your doctor. Follow the instructions on the medication label to the letter.

Your doctor may adjust your dosage from time to time to ensure that you receive the greatest outcomes possible. Never use this medication in bigger or lesser quantities or for a longer period than prescribed.

If your physician has instructed you to consume Abilify for more than 6 weeks, follow his or her instructions.

Abilify may be administered with or without meals, depending on your preference.

Abilify is available in the following forms:

  • An Oral tablet
  • An Orally disintegrating tablet
  • An Oral solution

Moreover, the Abilify tablets are available in the following strengths:

  • 2 mg
  • 5 mg
  • 10 mg
  • 15 mg
  • 20 mg
  • 30 mg

Do not smash, chop, or split the normal tablet; instead, swallow it as a whole and without chewing. It is not recommended to break the Abilify orally disintegrating dosage in half.

Measure liquids medication using the dosage syringe that is supplied, or with a specialized dose-measuring teaspoon or medication cup that has been specially designed for this purpose.

Obtain a dosage measurement device from your pharmacists if you do not already have one.

To use the orally disintegrating tablet, follow these instructions:

  • Store the medication in its multi-pack until you become prepared to use it.
  • Open its wrapper and pull it aside to reveal the contents. Avoid pushing a tablet through the foil since this may cause harm to the device.
  • Using dry hands, carefully extract the tablet and put it in your mouth.

Do not swallow the pill in its whole entirety. You should not chew it, but rather allow it to disintegrate in your tongue. If necessary, you may sip fluids to aid in the swallowing of the dissolved pill.

Abilify should be used continuously to get the greatest benefits.

It is not recommended that you stop taking Abilify all at once. It is possible that stopping abruptly may aggravate your problem.

During the course of your treatment with this medication, your physician will have to monitor your improvement. Therefore, ensure regular doctor visits.

Side effects of Abilify - Aripiprazole

The curative benefits of a medication are often accompanied by undesirable side effects. Similarly, Abilify falls under this category.

If any of the side effects listed below persists or worsen, contact your doctor or pharmacist as soon as possible.

  • Lightheadedness
  • Feeling dizzy
  • Lethargy
  • Discomfort,
  • Hazy eyesight
  • Gaining weight,
  • Vomiting,
  • Fatigue,
  • Excessive salivation or drooling
  • Constipation,
  • Difficulty in sleeping

Inform your doctor immediately if you experience any severe adverse effects, such as if you collapse or faint. Some other adverse side effects include:

Changes in one's state of mind or emotions (such as being very anxious, feeling depressive, and having suicidal thoughts)

  • Seizures,
  • Being restless
  • Difficult swallowing,
  • Trembling (tremor),
  • Weird facial expressions
  • Spasm of the muscles
  • Breathing that is disrupted when sleeping
  • Having difficulty restraining certain impulses such as eating or indulging in sexual activities.

This medicine may trigger your blood sugar to increase infrequently, which might lead to or aggravate diabetes. If you have signs of hyperglycemia, such as excessive thirst or urine, contact your doctor immediately.

If you are already diabetic, monitor your blood sugar levels regularly as instructed by your doctor and discuss the findings with them. Your diabetic medicine, workout regimen, and food may all need to be adjusted by your doctor.

This drug may induce a disease known as tardive dyskinesia, which occurs only in rare cases. There are certain instances when this condition may be permanent. Inform your doctor as soon as possible if you have any odd or uncontrollable motions (especially of the face, mouth, tongue, arms, or legs).

This drug has the potential to induce an extremely severe disease known as a neuroleptic malignant syndrome, which occurs only in rare cases. If you have any of the following symptoms, get medical attention immediately away:

  • Feeling extremely fatigued, lethargic.
  • fever
  • Extreme anxiety,
  • Dark urine,
  • Stiffness, discomfort, tenderness, and weakening in the muscles
  • Pulse that is too rapid or too irregular
  • Profuse sweating

Contraindications of Abilify - Aripiprazole

The following are some of the contraindications of Abilify: 

Drug Interactions

Aripiprazole oral tablet has the potential to interact with a variety of different medicines. Different interactions may result in a variety of outcomes.

One kind may impair the effectiveness of a medication, while another can enhance the severity of its adverse effects, among other things.

The following is a list of medicines that may interact with aripiprazole in one way or another. This list may not include all of the medications that might potentially interact with this medicine.

Aripiprazole is more likely to cause adverse effects when used in conjunction with some other medicines than when taken alone. This is due to the possibility that the quantity of aripiprazole in your bloodstream has risen. Examples of these medications are as follows:

Anti-fungal drugs:  Drugs that are used to fight fungal infections such as itraconazole fall under this category.

Feeling sick, constipated, nervous, dizzy, or fatigued are all possible effects of the concurrent use of the two. Your chances of having tardive dyskinesia, which is a movement disorder and neuroleptic malignant syndrome may also increase likewise.

Your doctor may decide to reduce the amount of aripiprazole you take.

Anti-depressants: Drugs that are used to fight depression such as paroxetine fall under this category.

Feeling sick, constipated, nervous, dizzy, or fatigued are all possible effects of the concurrent use of the two. Your chances of having tardive dyskinesia, which is a movement disorder and neuroleptic malignant syndrome may also increase likewise.

Your doctor may decide to reduce the amount of aripiprazole you take.

In some of these cases, when aripiprazole is used with other medications, it may not be as effective in treating your illness. This is due to the possibility that the quantity of aripiprazole in your bloodstream has reduced.

Examples of these medications are as follows:

Anti-seizure medications: Your psychiatrist may move you from aripiprazole to an alternative antipsychotic medication or raise the amount of aripiprazole you are taking if you are taking aripiprazole along with any anti-seizure medication.

Example: carbamazepine.

Overdose of Abilify - Aripiprazole

In case of an Abilify overdose, rush to your nearest medical facility as soon as possible. Signs of overdose include:

  • Feeling dizzy
  • Tremors
  • Seizure
  • Aggressive behavior
  • Confusion
  • Vomiting
  • Heart rate may be fast or sluggish.
  • Respiratory difficulties or collapse

Storage of Abilify - Aripiprazole

If you're thinking about storing this medicine, keep in mind the following points:

  • Keep this medication in the original sealed containers it was received in, tightly closed, and out of the reach of children and pets.
  • Store the product at room temperature away from sources of excessive moisture and heat.
Abdur Rashid
Medically Reviewed By Abdur Rashid
MSC Public Health, MCSP, MHCPC
BSC (Hon) Physiotherapy
Consultant Neuro-spinal & Musculoskeletal Physiotherapist

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