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Found a med that works! Memantine (Namenda) for impulsivity/compulsivity and binge eating

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My pdoc and I have finally found something that works for my impulsivity/compulsivity (mainly impulse buying, which I've always had an issue with, but may or may not have been exacerbated by Abilify) and my binge eating: Memantine (Namenda). For those who haven't heard of this medicine, it's an Alzheimer's disease medicine, but it is gaining use in psychiatry for many off-label uses, including binge eating, impulse control disorders, ADHD, etc.

After I was prescribed Abilify almost a year ago, I started piling up some serious credit card debt because I was impulse buying, and soon both my credit cards were beyond their credit limit. I have also dealt with binge eating for several years. My I asked my pdoc about memantine, to see what she thought about it, and if it would be worth trying for these things (I told her about my debt, and she knew about my binge eating, as we have tried several things for it). She agreed to try me on a starting dose of 5 mg 2x/day. I responded very well, as I found myself able to stave off urges to impulse buy a lot easier! I also noticed my appetite has diminished, my binge eating has subsided, and I have lost 10 lb in about the span of a week (which is starting to slow down).

My next visit (my most recent visit), I told her the results, and she agreed to increase to the maintenance dose of 10 mg 2x/day, and I'm noticing the therapeutic effects are markedly increased. Next time I see her, I may consider switching to Namenda XR, which has a dose of 27 mg, which is taken just once a day.

I figured I would write this post in case anyone who is dealing with these issues and might be searching for any answers.

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I am thrilled you’ve found something that helps. And I’m going to mention it to my mother, who’s suffered from BED her whole life.

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