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Abilify withdrawal?


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#1 Moody

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Posted 29 May 2009 - 02:23 PM

Hi, I have been taking Abilify for about 5 months, I guess. I was originally talking it alone, but it made me start rapid cycling, so my pdoc added Remeron, and then everything was great.

I was only taking 1mg of Abilify with the Remeron, so I didnt think it would be a big deal if I stopped. Why would I want to stop if everything was great? well, I have been feeling so stable and normal lately, I wasnt even sure I needed the Abilify. Also, the whole rapid cycling thing scared me, plus, my hair is now a lot thinner than when I started taking Abilify. I lost a bunch of hair when I tried Lamictal back in January, but it has gotten even thinner since then. I thought after 5 months, my hair should be growing back, unless the Abilify was messing with it too.

So, I decided to quit the Abilify for a while and see if my hair grew back. I have only been off abilify for a week now, and I went from feeling great to feeling really depressed. Is this just a rebound/withdrawal thing? Do you think it will pass in another week or so? Has anyone else had problems quitting Abilify?

Maybe I should have just kept taking it, but I am scared of loosing all my hair. Even more is falling out since I quit the Abilify... ;)
DX: Bipolar II, mixed states


#2 jarn

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Posted 29 May 2009 - 02:38 PM

Have you asked your doctor about your hair loss? Maybe it is not related to your medication.

Does your doctor know you've stopped taking Abilify? Would you consider putting another med in its place?

Current meds: Saphris 25mg, Latuda 40mg, Lamotrigine 250mg, Pristiq 50mg, Ativan 1mg


#3 Moody

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Posted 29 May 2009 - 03:04 PM

Have you asked your doctor about your hair loss? Maybe it is not related to your medication.

Does your doctor know you've stopped taking Abilify? Would you consider putting another med in its place?


I am afraid my doctor wont believe me. I told her when I was loosing hair from the Lamictal, and she said that it wasnt a side effect, and she had never heard of that happening, even though plenty of people here have lost hair on Lamictal.

I just had bloodwork done and my thyroid checked a few months ago and everything was ok, so I dont know what else could be causing hair thinning.

And no, my doctor doesnt know I stopped Abilify. I was hoping that it wouldnt be a big deal, I thought maybe if I stopped it and my hair started growing back, I would have proof that the medicine was causing it. It sounds kind of dumb now. ;)
DX: Bipolar II, mixed states

#4 gizmo

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Posted 29 May 2009 - 05:44 PM

The main side effect of stopping AAP's cold turkey is the sudden and rapid return of the symptoms you took the medicine to stop from occuring in the first place... so, yes, your symptoms are, in a way, the result of stopping the abilify. Starting it back up again will likely improve your mood.

I take another AAP, and I notice massive hair shedding. I get a brushful every morning, and don't even ask me how much comes out when I wash my hair. I have really thick hair, so the shedding doesn't bother me much, but it is pretty freaky. I've had all my blood levels checked, and they are fine, too.

Take the abilify and might I suggest following a gastric bypass person's vitamin regime for hair loss. It might help you combat the loss.
Diagnosis: BP I with Psychotic Features, GAD, ADHD, Chronic Migraines, various physical stuff.
Meds Currently On: Depakote 2000 mg, Risperdal 8 mg, Latuda 80 mg, Prozac 60 mg, Vyvanse 70 mg, Propranolol 40 mg BID, Klonopin 2 mg BID PRN
Meds Sort-Of Mental Related: Lipitor 40 mg, Zofran 4 mg PRN, Fioricet PRN, Stadol PRN, Botox received on 8/16/13

I post on an iPhone, so please forgive grammatical errors or strange word inclusions. It's the auto correct!

#5 Moody

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Posted 30 May 2009 - 09:17 AM

I take another AAP, and I notice massive hair shedding. I get a brushful every morning, and don't even ask me how much comes out when I wash my hair. I have really thick hair, so the shedding doesn't bother me much, but it is pretty freaky. I've had all my blood levels checked, and they are fine, too.

Take the abilify and might I suggest following a gastric bypass person's vitamin regime for hair loss. It might help you combat the loss.


So would you say that your hair thinning has leveled off now? I mean, obviously you are still loosing lots of hair, but you dont notice it getting any thinner? My hair has gotten thinner, but I can live with it the way it is now. I am just scared that if I stay on Abilify, it will continue to thin to the point where it looks really awful.

I will check out the vitamins you suggested, thanks.
DX: Bipolar II, mixed states

#6 gizmo

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Posted 30 May 2009 - 11:07 AM

I still lose about the same amount of hair now as I did four months ago when I started the zyprexa. I wouldn't say it's levelling out as much as "still continuing". I don't notice any thinning hair in the mirror now or at the beginning of starting zyprexa, because I have really thick hair. And I still have really thick hair. BTW, I've been on AAP's for years, including abilify, and zyprexa is the only one that made me lose so much hair.

In my experience, and in watching a friend lose hair from a gastric bypass surgery, you have to lose large clumps of hair for months in order for it to really make a noticeable difference in the mirror (and when people look at you). The amount of hair I lose likely would not translate to a notecable difference (ie bald or thinning patches) or either my hair or a typical person's hair.
Diagnosis: BP I with Psychotic Features, GAD, ADHD, Chronic Migraines, various physical stuff.
Meds Currently On: Depakote 2000 mg, Risperdal 8 mg, Latuda 80 mg, Prozac 60 mg, Vyvanse 70 mg, Propranolol 40 mg BID, Klonopin 2 mg BID PRN
Meds Sort-Of Mental Related: Lipitor 40 mg, Zofran 4 mg PRN, Fioricet PRN, Stadol PRN, Botox received on 8/16/13

I post on an iPhone, so please forgive grammatical errors or strange word inclusions. It's the auto correct!

#7 Guest_hawk_*

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Posted 21 January 2010 - 09:51 AM

I was taking Abilify but never noticed any hair loss. I quit taking it because of weight gain.

#8 papertrees

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Posted 21 January 2010 - 10:43 AM

I was on abilify, before, for 2 years. I stopped it cold turkey because I switched pdocs and the new one took me off it. Now, I'm back to my old pdoc and back to abilify. No problems ever since. And yes, I also lost hair on lamictal. Lots of it.

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Diagnosis: Schizoaffective, Bipolar Type; Borderline personality disorder; Anorexia nervosa
Meds: Saphris 10mg, Lamictal 200mg, Valium 10mg.


#9 themadhatter

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Posted 21 January 2010 - 12:04 PM

I stopped taking 20mg of abilify without any withdrawl sysmptoms but I heard this was really risky and I should have titrated myself down. I don't think stopping a 1mg dose cold would cause anything but I would talk to a pdoc before just stopping meds. When I went off all my meds it was due to financial reasons and was not the best for me to do but I had no choice. Also I noticed a little hair loss on lamictal and abilify but not too much to cause concern.
dx- bipolar I

scripts as of 9/13/11- 100 mg lamictal, 300mg seroquel xr am 200mg seroquel non xr pm, 30mg cymbalta, 50mg trazadone prn, 20mg simvastatin

#10 Moody

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Posted 21 January 2010 - 04:00 PM

This is an older post, I have been off Abilify and on Risperdal for about 4 months now. I guess most people dont get withdrawal symptoms with Abilify, but I sure did. I felt like crap for an entire month (mixed state and rapid cycling) until I started the Risperdal. So far I like the Risperdal a lot more than the Abilify. Abilify made me very jittery and irritable.

As I suspected, the Abilify was doing something to my hair, maybe slowing the regrowth rate? I didnt notice a lot of hair falling out, like I did with Lamictal, I just noticed that my hair was getting thinner. Whatever was going on, it affected my entire body, not just my head. My eyebrows thinned too, and I lost about 3/4 of my leg hair, which is kind of an awesome side effect. Since stopping the Abilify, all of my leg hair has grown back (darn!), and the hair on my head has grown in a little around the hairline. I am hoping the rest of it will come back eventually.
DX: Bipolar II, mixed states

#11 Guest_aj_*

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Posted 28 May 2010 - 04:13 PM

Hi, I have been taking Abilify for about 5 months, I guess. I was originally talking it alone, but it made me start rapid cycling, so my pdoc added Remeron, and then everything was great.

I was only taking 1mg of Abilify with the Remeron, so I didnt think it would be a big deal if I stopped. Why would I want to stop if everything was great? well, I have been feeling so stable and normal lately, I wasnt even sure I needed the Abilify. Also, the whole rapid cycling thing scared me, plus, my hair is now a lot thinner than when I started taking Abilify. I lost a bunch of hair when I tried Lamictal back in January, but it has gotten even thinner since then. I thought after 5 months, my hair should be growing back, unless the Abilify was messing with it too.

So, I decided to quit the Abilify for a while and see if my hair grew back. I have only been off abilify for a week now, and I went from feeling great to feeling really depressed. Is this just a rebound/withdrawal thing? Do you think it will pass in another week or so? Has anyone else had problems quitting Abilify?

i have been off abilify for about a week now. I took myself off because i was having really bad manic behavior which i never had before. now I am feeling so sad, lonely, and i am having hot flashes. is this a side effect of coming off abilify? how long will it last?
Maybe I should have just kept taking it, but I am scared of loosing all my hair. Even more is falling out since I quit the Abilify... ;)



#12 Guest_AJ_*

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Posted 28 May 2010 - 04:27 PM

I was taking abilify for about 6 weeks (10 mg) and started to have manic behaviors i never had before. so i took myself off last week. now i am so sad, lonely, and crying all the time. i am absolutely miserable. i had to call in sick for work. i was so desperate i started to take a half dose of abilify, and i can start to feel some of the sadness going away. has this happened to anyone? how long does it take to tapper yourself off? it was so bad i went to see me famyily practice doc, but she just gave me trazadone and told me to stay off. but i couldn't take the severe depression.

#13 Guest_Mar_*

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Posted 25 October 2010 - 08:27 PM

I have been on abilify for 4 years now. Also lamictal and Lexapro. Some hair thinning but it seemed to have leveled off, I doubt if I will ever get my thicker hair back again. The abilify has changed my life in the most positive sense. I have gone from unbearable and selfish i think, to rational and understanding and kind. I feel good. Was bipolar but am better on these meds. The side effects are out weighed by the benefits!

#14 ParanoidAndroid

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Posted 01 December 2010 - 09:10 PM

I take abilify and haven't noticed any hair loss.
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#15 Guest_Karen_*

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Posted 18 December 2010 - 09:50 PM

I just started Abilify 10mg and Came off cold from Risperidone 1.5mg cold turkey. I had to because there is a problem with Risperidone increasing the seretonin lactation levels in the body. Breaking it down for you women is plain terms, it causes enlargement of your breasts that are very tender and painful. You can even secrete milk. It messes up your whole hormone cycle. I was on it for 2 months and the acceptable seretonin lactation level in your blood was 20% for me. I am 40 years old and mine were 92% in 2 months. I can claim that since stopping the Risperidone my breasts are returning to normal.

#16 2Spirals

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Posted 25 November 2011 - 07:05 PM

I just found this post after searching for more information on abilify withdrawal, and wow! Since early summer/late spring I've noticed tons of hair coming out in the shower and during the day and never corralated that to my abilify. I never lost any hair when I had been on lamictal, but i started the abilify in may of this year and not long after that I noticed hair loss. I thought it was stress, but I am not really stressed about much right now, nothing that would cause hair loss, so it must be the abilify.

Diagnosis: Bipolar I, Generalized Anxiety Disorder & Panic Disorder
Medications: Lamictal 200mg, Lorazepam 2mg (PRN), Clonazepam 2mg
Old Medications: Buspar, Paxil, Lexapro, Lamictal, Topamax, Geodon, Clonazepam, Abilify, Seroquel XR, Citalopram, Risperidone, Seroquel IR, Viibryd, wellbutrin


#17 crab76

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Posted 26 November 2011 - 12:50 PM

I had / have hair loss on Abilify. I take wellbutrin too and I know that causes hair loss. BUT I took abilify 2mg alone last winter, had some thinning but when I stopped it fell out in clumps and the texture changed. About a month after stopping it started to feel better. So I know it was the Abilify.

Now that I'm on wellbutrin and abilify I am losing hair but it's leveled out a little. I take a TON of vitamins for my hair so it has helped a little. I want to get off my meds do to hair loss and weight gain. I'm so upset about these two side effects.

And when I stopped my abilify last winter I had major sadness, crying spells for about two weeks. I think I should have tapered off slower. I just stopped. But it was only 2mg so I thought I'd be fine. It was pretty bad though. If I stop this time I will decrease it very slowly.

Edited by crab76, 26 November 2011 - 12:50 PM.

DX - Borderline Personality Disorder
RX - Wellbutrin 50mg (been weaning off very slowly)

Old DX - Depression = been feeling better last 6 months
RX Tried - Abilify, Lamactil, Triliptal, Viibryd, Celexa, Lexapro, Prozac

#18 mindwheel

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Posted 22 December 2011 - 09:14 PM

I stopped taking 20mg of abilify without any withdrawl sysmptoms but I heard this was really risky and I should have titrated myself down. I don't think stopping a 1mg dose cold would cause anything but I would talk to a pdoc before just stopping meds. When I went off all my meds it was due to financial reasons and was not the best for me to do but I had no choice. Also I noticed a little hair loss on lamictal and abilify but not too much to cause concern.


What were some of the things that were risky about dropping 20mgs flat? Im on 5 mgs Abilify with 20 Celexa, finally stabilized. And yet I just have this obsessional urge to just dump every pill down the toilet. This is like OCD rebound or something. Anyone else get compulsive urges to de-medicate cold turkey?
Dx: BPII rapid cycling, OCD
Rx: Abilify 5mg, Citalopram 20 mg, Ativan 2-3mg PRN, Cogentin 1 mg PRN
Shelved: Lithium, Prozac, Effexor XR, Seroquel

#19 sylvan

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Posted 22 December 2011 - 10:20 PM

Anyone else get compulsive urges to de-medicate cold turkey?


Yes. Every single time it was a miserable failure. If you're stable, stay on your meds. If you aren't stable then talk to your pdoc and see what they can suggest to get you there. Oh, and don't flush your meds. It isn't good for the environment and it isn't good for your pocketbook. Those pills are expensive and when you end up needing them again then you'll have to go out and buy them all over again.

It has been a year since one of the best people that I've ever had the pleasure of knowing passed away. He was strong, intelligent, caring, and honest. I had the honor of calling him Daddy. I will miss both my parents for as long as I live. I hope that I can be even half as good of a spouse, parent, and friend as the two of them were. Life is now forever changed for me. It will never be like it was. That doesn't mean it will all be bad, it will just be different.


#20 notfred

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Posted 22 December 2011 - 10:28 PM

What were some of the things that were risky about dropping 20mgs flat? Im on 5 mgs Abilify with 20 Celexa, finally stabilized.


It is like kicking the legs out from under a chair to your nervous system. It is just stupid. If you are stable, it is because of the meds, don't muck with it.

nf

Edited by notfred, 23 December 2011 - 01:01 PM.






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