Anecdotal evidence shows a strong link between the antipsychotic drug, Abilify and certain compulsive behaviors, including gambling. This risk also extends to other similar drugs containing aripiprazole. Abilify is a top-selling drug often prescribed to help manage bipolar disorder.
Some users of these medications report losing thousands of dollars because of compulsive gambling, when they had no problems with gambling before their doctors prescribed this drug. There are a number of pendling lawsuits against the manufacturer of Abilify and other aripiprazole medications.
The Issue with Abilify and Other Aripiprazole Medications
Abilify works by altering two important neurotransmitters in the brain: dopamine and serotonin. This works to help manage bipolar disorder and other psychotic conditions because the levels of these neurotransmitters remain steady. However, there are also reports of significant side effects related to the tampering of these neurotransmitters. This drug appears to lead to compulsive behaviors in some people. This may include hyper-sexuality, binge eating, shopping addiction, and compulsive gambling. In addition to Abilify, other drugs in this class include Abilify Maintena, Aristada, and any other brand of medication containing aripiprazole.
Dopamine, serotonin, oxytocin and endorphins work together to set your moods and make you feel good. While medications that alter the levels of these chemicals are great tools for managing a number of mental health disorders, some side effects can be serious. Most antidepressants alter your body’s handling of serotonin, because it is known as a mood lifter. It is no surprise that these chemicals might be somehow linked to addiction and compulsive behaviors such as pathological gambling.
FDA Action Against Abilify and Aripiprazole
The U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) received enough reports about Abilify and impulse-control issues to raise concerns about aripiprazole. More than 60 doctors and patients filed reports of gambling addiction, and other compulsive behaviors, between January 2005 and December 2014. The FDA issued a safety communication in May of 2016.
Though the drug warnings before 2016 had listed pathological gambling as a possible side effect of the medication, the FDA did not feel this accurately reflected the significant risk of impulse-control issues they saw in reports. They also felt additional warnings were necessary to warn users of other possible compulsive behaviors, such as hyper-sexuality, binge eating, and shopping. Thus, they added new warnings about possible impulse-control problems to both the drug label and the Medication Guide for all products containing aripiprazole. This included the most popular aripiprazole product, Abilify.
Take Action if You Took Abilify and Developed a Gambling Problem
Many people who take antipsychotic drugs have mental health issues that may already include addiction or compulsive behaviors. This sometimes makes it difficult to spot a medication-related impulse-control issue. However, there is a strong enough correlation between these behaviors and this medication that anyone who develops a gambling problem after taking this drug should contact us for more information about the ongoing litigation.
Many people enjoy gambling for fun every now and then, but those who develop a compulsive gambling problem cannot quit, even when they lose thousands of dollars. If this sounds like you or a family member, and you developed this habit after taking Abilify, do not hesitate to call us.
We may be able to help you file a claim to recover not only your gambling losses, but also damages for your related expenses, emotional suffering, and possibly punitive damages. We can document your compulsive behaviors, and collect evidence to prove your losses. We can also tie these behaviors to your use of Abilify or a related medication. Throughout this process, we will provide support and guidance, as well as ensure you get the proper mental health care to recover from your compulsion.
Talk with an Abilify and Compulsive Gambling Lawyer Today
If you suffer from impulse control issues to exhibit compulsive behavior and also take Abilify, give us a call today. The legal team at Gacovino, Lake & Associates, P.C. can help you understand the validity of your case, and explain your legal options for compensation. We will pursue a claim on your behalf, and fight to recover the payout you need to cover your gambling debts, in addition to pain and suffering for the ordeal you endured. Call us today at 800-550-0000 to set up a free case evaluation. We handle all defective drug cases on a contingency basis, so you owe us nothing until we recover money for you.