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Well, you said you wanted horror stories...

2 mg of Abilify gave me horrendous anxiety. I was yelling at people for no reason, having panic attacks in my sleep every night, and was incredibly agitated during the day. When I went to my followup appointment, I was acting so bizarre (possibly hypomanic?) and saying so many off-the-wall things that my pdoc said I needed to stop taking it immediately.

But as always, YMMV. Most people do find Abilify makes them tired.

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Emperor, it isn't generally described as one of the more effective antipsychotics for anxiety, and it's not being given at an anti-psychotic dose - but apparently the plan is to see how you do and then titrate it up. The akathisia with it can be remarkable, so if you feel antsy, try to sort out if it's anxiety or akathisia.

I kind of hate to say all that and maybe squick you out, but you're a grown up, a very rational one at that, and you won't fret too much over the details.

Monitor your dietary intake rationally and see how it goes.

Maybe, if inpatient (voluntary) treatment isn't an option, is there an outpatient partial day treatment program you can try for some intensive targeted therapy?

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Abilify has been good to me. Been taking it 3 years already.

No dangerous, out of this world side effects. No weight gain either.

BUT it did nothing for my hallucinations.

I was switched to Risperdal Consta because of this.

Try abilify. It's a good drug.

Goodluck!

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Persephone- Thanks, I'm not being sarcastic either. This was the reaction I had in mind that may happen to me to be honest, I don't know why, I'm just picturing that shit happening to me too, and have been since he said "we're going to try Abilify" AND I'm already on Wellbutrin XL which honestly seems to be making everything worse (it's activating) my anxiety, depression-like "mood issue" and all that shit

Silver- I think inpatient treatment IS an option, I just don't know whether to go or not. I've had some decent days here and there where I can function, and I'm wondering how much of this is the Wellbutrin, seriously. I was bad before I got on it, but the anxiety wasn't like this. I think I'm way more obsessive/anxious and maybe more "mood issue-y" I'm still pissed about that, sorry. I'll try the Abilify and give it a fair shot so long as it doesn't make me feel like Persephone did, heh.

Papertrees- I'm happy you have a med you like! I hope it's good for me too, even though I don't have psychotic symptoms. Hey! Maybe it will give me some, cool!

Thanks so much, everyone. Any more stories are welcome, advice as well, but I already know i'm going to try the shit, I think. My insurance is being weird about it, so I don't really know what to do, I got it filled today, but will probably have to call p-doc's office about my insurance bieng a weirdo about it. I only got approved for a 15 day supply, and I don't know if we have to go trhough that approval process every fifteen days, or if that means fifteen days is all I get? I don't know. Whatever.

What other useless shit can I ramble about on this thread?

Eh, I'm tired. Thanks guys!

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This may be a dumb question, but if SJW helped you, why not go back on it?

It sounds like it caused insomnia and a flair of anxiety maybe, but perhaps attendant AC or benzos to dampen down brain activity could help balance out the activation.

I don't see why your doctor won't support an attempt to try SJW again. It's not like you have psychosis or mania, you have depression, and SJW is an appropriate treatment. It is the only thing that helped you from your own self report, why not do something that you know helps?

Pharmaceuticals = not end all be all for mental health problems. If we were in germany, SJW treatment would be first line for any patient presenting with moderate and mild depression (fact: if one is posting on crazyboards, one is at a level of depression which is very likely NOT worse than "moderate", many people think they are severely depressed when clinically speaking severe depresison is reserved only for those patients who are rendered nonfunctional by depression, which means, "no ability to find pleasure or motivation to post online"... just a side rant but there are a lot of patients saying they are severely depressed when they aren't).

Anyway, IMO...the germans = RITE.

SJW does a lot of good stuff.

*It is a mild antimicrobial. People who take SJW are less prone to infections.

*It encourages the metabolism of many drugs and toxic substances as it upregulates hepatic enzymes. If one subscribes to the hypothesis that mood dysregulation may follow exposure to environmental toxins and hormones, SJW can help with that. SJW is going to increase metabolism & clearance of almost all drugs and hormones.

*It encourages glucose uptake by upregulating GLUT4 , so it will antagonize diabetes and hyperinsulinemia, unlike many other depression treatments.

*It increases brain sensitivity to light, and it is noted that light is also antidepressant

*If mood problems are related to an underlying PCOS disorder (which is very common, 10% of women have PCOS and more than half have mood disorders), SJW is very good to help with that as it metabolizes estrogen, helps regulate menstrual cycles, and promotes glucose uptake/lowers insulin... in contrast other therapies for depression would be expected to make PCOS and glucose disorder worse.

S/E of SJW:

*If a marked tendency toward mania, there is the chance of mania (although, compared to other ADs, SJW is a lot better for bipolar as it is a MULTIPLE reuptake inhibitor, it boosts anti-manic neurotransmitters like GABA and glutamate as well as the pro-manic ones).

*Depending on the preparation, it can be activating and energizing or more calming and sedating/numbing like a SSRI. IT can make anxiety and insomnia worse.

*Increased metabolism of drugs. This is the flipside to the potential benefit. If you need a certain drug level, say antiepileptics or something, SJW will lower that level. People have DIED from this, it's not a joke. If there is a med you require to be on for your health/survival, SJW is not for you, odds are it will lower the drug level.

*Increased light sensitivity. FLipside: people can get bad burns from SJW, but this effect tends to diminish with time.

*BCP is less effective. Again, this is the flipside to the potential benefit on the reproductive system. SJW will increase metabolism of estrogen which can help regularize PCOS/endocrine idsorders, but it will also make BCP less effective or useless and you can get pregnant while taking it. Hormonal BCP is not compatible with SJW.

Pregnant women can't take it, as it metabolizes hormones, it will cause abortion.

There are many psychoactive compounds in SJW, the two main ones are hypericin and hyperforin.

-Hyperforin is a multiple reuptake inhibitor increasing serotonin norepinephrine dopamine GABA and glutamate. I perceive hyperforin standardized brands as sedating and calming. It is responsible for the increased drug metabolism of SJW, and it is considered the "most important" psychoactive compound contained therein.

-Hypericin inhibits dopamine beta hydroxylase , leading to more dopamine and less norepi/epi. I found it promoted insomnia and made me feel numb. This compound is associated with increased photosensitivity.

Just wanted to let you know that it is OK to try something non-prescription (at least in america - in euroean countries you need a script), and if it helps you, there's nothing wrong with that. And, your doctor ought to support that.

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OW- I used the Hypericin formulation, for the record.

The SJW made me feel the HAPPIEST, it had the best effect on mood, at that time, mood was my main concern (and at this point, it's starting to look like that's the case again anyway) but I also have some pretty nasty anxiety shit going on. I loved the way the SJW worked on my mood, but I was a nervous wreck a lot of the time. I didn't know it was possible to be that HAPPY, and I haven't been since. Not to say I haven't been happy at all, just not THAT happy, and it was nice.

Why won't I take it again?

#1- the anxiety issue

#2- The shit isn't regulated, you don't know what you're getting. The brand I used worked fairly well for me for depression, as I've stated before, but I would've liked to try something that worked for the anxiety

#3- I COULD take benzos with it, but as far as I know, SJW makes the elimination process of drugs speed up pretty quickly. I'm already on 3mg klonopin a day, I can only go up in dose ONE MORE TIME and then if it doesn't work after a while, I'll have to go off it. The point is, that since the SJW would make me metabolize the benzos more quickly, I don't see much point in taking them, and then I'm fucked as far as anxiety goes, which WAS my main problem a few months ago, and probably still is.

Anyway, after I've run through all the pharmacueticals, I'll go back to natural remedies if I can find any that work, if I don't find any FDA approved meds that work.

I DO like my drugs to be FDA regulated.

Anyway, I wish they would do extensive research on natural remedies here in the U.S and get the FDA involved, but they don't.

So I go to the p-doc.

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Abilify helped my depression and my motivation. I actually wanted to do stuff. It helped my social phobia as well. Turns out I got horrible anxiety from it and had to discontinue it after a few months. A lot of people seem to like it though. I hope it works out to be a good med for you.

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Abilify has been good to me. I don't take much of it - up to a whopping five milligrams. But hey, it works. (My doc thinks I'm a bit med sensitive as well)

Let's see...side effects...(I'm a side effect magnet - you may not get some of these)

Acne - easily treated with salicylic acid face wash.

Weight - I gained five, and I sure as hell can't lose any to save my life. Don't even bother starving yourself - been there, done that. I think that just made things worse.

Flu-like symptoms - I got these for the first two or three weeks. I had the air conditioner in my car on and the windows rolled down because I kept going back and forth between hot and cold. I would sweat like crazy and have horrendous cravings for water. It was weird.

Restlessness - I got this the first time I was titrating. My doc wanted to see how high up I could go. I stayed at 2.5 mg for a while because that's what I could tolerate without hopping up and down from the compulsions to move. I eventually made it up to 5 mg.

Weird sleep-wake cycle - My sleep-wake cycle seemed to reset, and I was able to start waking up in the morning. Not sure if this was due to my mood stabilizing or what. I'm typically a night owl.

Emotional numbness - I had this for a few months. Not sure if it was the Abilify or if it was post-hypomania weirdness. Tough to say. It went away though, so no worries.

Nothing major, in short.

One thing that Abilify didn't do for me is help with obsessions. It's not known for doing that. I have to take Effexor to ward off those nasty things. A drug that I recall you saying you found helpful at one point.

You still have a lot of options, thankfully. I find this one to be a weird option, but whatever. I didn't go to medical school. I just ingest the stuff.

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From most of what I'm hearing it doesn't seem to be the best for anxiety. I'm still going to try it.

rowen- yes, Effexor almost COMPLETELY rid me of really awful obsessions and intrusive thoughts. Unfortunately, that and Cymbalta bot had me falling asleep on the couch while trying to watch my toddler. So it was either say on the Effexor and wake up to find my child drinking bleach or go off it and be aware of her at all times, so I had to go off it. I don't think it helped GAD or the Social shit either. I still panicked at the grocery store. I was on 150mg I think. It's one I'd like to try again, but it made me so sleepy and it has the risk of QT prolongation, which scares the shit out of me and I would imagine a lot of the time that I was dying on that pill. That was one obsession it didn't take care of.

I wish it would be okay to just take my fucking klonopin and that there was no such thing as tolerance and that I'd never ever have to go off it and have horrible withdrawals.

Not that all is dandy when I'm just taking the klonopin, but it's better than being on all these drugs that have given me undesireable side effects. Unfortunately, people grow tolerant to benzos, eventually they no longer work, and then hellish withdrawals. Sounds fun, I LIKE the look of my future.

Anyway, the weird thing is that if he would have just given me the depression DX (which I actually, now that I've thought about it, figure he wouldn't have because maybe he thought the klonopin was causing it and the Wellbutrin would help that) then I wouldn't have any stupid insurance issues with getting the Abilify, which has been a bitch. On my PI sheet it says it's used for depression.

It's not the klonopin causing it, I'm prone to this shit, usually it's more mild though. I wasn't depressed when I first started seeking treatment, I was having like, the very first longer lasting remission of my life, so I don't think I get taken too seriously because no one really thinks it's depression ever. They never had. Even PPD she said was more anxiety than anything else.

Does anxiety make a person suicidal? That's what I want to know. Geez.

Anyway, this isn't my blog!

I'll try and get it all figured out this week.

I can't believe how many replies I've gotten, you all have been very helpful.

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I used to call Abilify "Abitchify" and "Akillify." So you can guess how I feel about it...lol. Bad restlessness, couldn't sleep, was angry, cried cause I was so angry, was anxious. BLEH. And I stayed on the shit for 2 weeks! I thought it'd get better but I felt like crap the FIRST DAY.

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So I've just started taking abilify (~2 weeks now) and have really not had any side effects other than a bit of nausea. I have, however, noticed a major increase in anxiety over the past 3-4 days. I've contacted the dr for an opinion and any suggestions that might make it easier to leave the house. I'm wondering if the timing of this round of anxiety is at all related to the abilify. Anyone have a similar experience?

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Yeah, if you go back through this thread, you'll see that some people have had a bit of an increase in anxiety levels while on this pill ,which is the thing that scares me.

Sometimes, for me, when a drug causes anxiety to worsen, it will do slow over a period of time and not ALWAYS right away.

Just my two cents. I've never been on an AAP though, but I bet it's similar in that the anxiety can build up over time.

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I'm up to 35 mg abilify now and panic attacks are running my life. I was given lexapro to help with the anxiety, but it will be a while before it starts working. Not fun.

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I'm up to 35 mg abilify now and panic attacks are running my life. I was given lexapro to help with the anxiety, but it will be a while before it starts working. Not fun.

Damn, that sucks. Do you have anything to help relieve the panic attacks? Maybe a call to your p-doc is in order for that, I wouldn't deal with that shit.

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I'm up to 35 mg abilify now and panic attacks are running my life. I was given lexapro to help with the anxiety, but it will be a while before it starts working. Not fun.

Damn, that sucks. Do you have anything to help relieve the panic attacks? Maybe a call to your p-doc is in order for that, I wouldn't deal with that shit.

Sort of....doc prescribed lexapro to ease anxiety with the caveat that it would first make things a bit worse and it would take a few weeks to have a beneficial effect. I'm guessing my doc has never actually had a panic attack. I started crying in the office when he told me that and asked for something to help NOW, but he said the risk of addiction to benzos was too great. I certainly don't wish to become addicted to anything, but I'm often terrified to leave my house as I would greatly prefer not to look bat-shit insane at work/store/driving in the car, etc. I've also gotten an additional symptom as of this weekend.....tremors that I thought were possibly seizures. Confession: I've never actually had a seizure and sometimes I overreact to possible medical conditions, but the thought of having seizures scared me!. Panic, hallucinations, and weird shaking spells......all things gained since beginning medication. Is it normal for meds to enhance craziness?

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It always enhances MY craziness in the first few weeks, I don't think that's normal and I ALWAYS call p-doc if I'm uncomfortable. You sound like you are having a really rough time. Some people take benadryl(anti-histimine) for anxiety around here I've heard, don't know how you're supposed to take it or anything, so I guess I"m useless there. But really, they should have given you some benzos for the start up time frame. That's WHY benzos are often given with a new AD because they can cause pretty bad anxiety.

You should call your doctor as soon as you can and tell him/her exactly what your symptoms are right now and express your level of discomfort. That doesn't sound good at all. I think you'll make it and everything (I'm always afraid a new pill will kill me or make me kill someone, heh) but you REALLY need to call your doctor, there's no reason you should be suffering like that if you don't have to.

Good luck. Lexapro IS supposed to help with anxiety, but it can increase it at first. CALL CALL CALL.

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If your anxiety is that bad it could very well be the abilify. I was afaid we were all gonna die in a car wreck when I had to leave my house. Their own studies say it causes anxiety in 25% of people who take it. The risk is less if you tirate slowly. Not to scare anyone, but I also felt like I had the flu the first week on it. For the people it does help, it helps a lot. Just my experience with it.

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It's probably increased my anxiety in certain areas, but not in others. It's not like I'm freaking out all the time, and I think I'll take this over the HELL I was going through before. I think the anxiety would be worse without the Abilify, it actually sedates me, no insomnia, nothing. I'm on Bupropion XL and THAT made my anxiety pretty bad, once we added abilify, it slowly started to get better.

YAY! Hopefully FINALLY I'm not in that statistic full of people who panicked 24/7 on a certain drug. That would be great.

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Well, I've been taking it for a week and so far so good. Just an update.

At first it made me feel really tired, now I can barely tell I took it, which is nice.

No extra anxiety (that wasn't there since I started the Bubpropion, anyway) no akathisia, no killing people, I'm doing okay.

P-doc doesn't plan on upping it to 5 for another month I guess. I think he could do it now, but he's the doctor.

He also insists that Abilify is NOT a sedating drug and I think he doesn't believe I was getting that effect from it! It's an AAP! I'm not saying it should sedate most people, because it probably doesn't, from the replies I got here, it sounded like it was activating, and from other shit I've read I'm aware it can do either. I'm not an idiot. It says right on the fucking bottle that it may cause drowsiness, but, if p-doc has never taken Abilify, he wouldn't know that I guess. END RANT.

I'm doing okay, I'm not "mood issue-"y anymore and I don't feel like offing myself and I am finding joy in shit again (not poop, though it's nice to go when you have to) and I feel much better. I guess at this point I don't have an Abilify horror story, maybe I will at 5mg wink.gif

Anyway, just thought I'd update if anyone gave a shit, I often wonder how people are doing if they don't post updates to posts and it drives me crazy sometimes. Sorry if you're one of those people, heh, I probably am too.

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Oh good, I was wondering how you're doing!

Hey, fwiw, Abilify causes sedation for me, too, and pdoc even writes the script as "take before bed" now. So you're not the only one who gets that side effect.

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