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Haven't been on here in a while, but have a question.

 

I'm diagnosed with schizoaffective disorder, and I've been on Seroquel XR (600mg) for about 2.5 years (down from 1200mg at the max.), and in combination with Prozac, and have done really well on it.  The trouble is, between experiments with Zyprexa, a few others, and then ending up on Seroquel, I gained about 160lbs, (I've since lost about 40) and I need to sleep 12-14 hours a night to feel rested.  But other than that, life is pretty good, so I feel bad complaining. 

 

I have a new psychiatrist, and she wants to switch me from Seroquel XR to Abilify.  We're tackling the sleep issue, and if weight comes off a bit easier then that's a bonus.  It's super hard to sleep so much - I work full-time, volunteer, am in a relationship.

 

Okay, so my question is: what dosage do people take when taking Abilify for psychosis?  I've been doing some reading on Abilify before my next appointment, but can't find a lot of info about dosages for psychosis.  Lots of info about it being used as an adjunct for depression. 

 

I guess a secondary question is (and yes, I'll be asking pdoc) is how do you know when you've found the right dosage when switching?  I'm going to reduce Seroquel and slowly add Abilify.  Before now, I've always done changes in the hospital and they've tended to be more sudden changes dealing with acute symptoms.  When you're symptoms are under control, how do you know when you've found the right maintenance dose of a new drug?  Or how will I know if I am having the beginnings of psychotic symptoms again?

 

Thx!

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I believe I read somewhere that below 10mg Abilify works more like an antidepressant, above 10mg it acts more like an antipsychotic.

I used to be on 20mg of Abilify, now I'm on 15mg for a maintenance dose. From what I've seen on here it seems the doses people take for psychosis seem to range from 10mg - 30mg.

 

I'm not sure how to answer your other questions, I would assume you and your pdoc would pick a dose and if symptoms show up adjust the dose accordingly, if symptoms don't show up then I guess you'd just stay at that dose.

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I need 30 mg to completely control my psychosis. Under 30 mg, I start to have mild hallucinations again. I'm currently at 15 mg, and I have just decided to live with the hallucinations. 15 mg is the minimum I can take to control my depression and delusions. Under 15 mg and I become profoundly depressed and delusional. So, it really depends on your exact symptoms. Personally, 15 mg is my minimum dose. Yours may be different. 

 

I have actually gained 30 lbs on Abilify. It makes me crave sugar and carbs like crazy. However, my blood work is fine. I also have the same problem as you, in regards to sleeping. I need 12-14 hours of sleep to feel rested. It really sucks. We are currently trying to find a way to wake me up. I found that at 10 mg of Abilify, I wasn't so sedated, but like I said, I can't take less than 15 mg. Bummer. 

 

Abilify is a great drug though. It did make me hypomanic at lower doses, I mean under 10 mg. It made me hypomanic immediately, within 2 days of taking it. The hypomania lasted about a week then faded on it's own. Abilify does a great job of treating my depression too, it got me out of a horrible depression within 3 days. I did get hypomanic once on 30 mg. That was kind of weird. I dunno if you're bipolar type or not, but just watch out for possible hypo/mania. 

Edited by Parapluie
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I love abilify.  I'm on 30 mg to manage psychosis.  I know I have found the right dosage when the symptoms are at their least.  I know when the hallucinations start up that I need a med tweak, and pdoc will raise it to 45 mg.  It takes (took me) about 7-8 weeks for the full effect to happen.

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I find that 30mg has heled me the most with psychosis and mood. I have been on up to 40mg of it. That seems too high for me. But then again I take seroquel along with the abilify. So that may be helping me out a lot too.

Good luck if your pdoc decides toput you on abilify! It has been a good med for me and I hope it will work well for your too.

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I was on 20mg and it seemed to work well, I didn't have psychotic symptoms.  Now, my pdoc tapered me down to a dosage that is more like an anti-depressant. (I haven't had psychotic symptoms in years).  His goal was somewhere between 2-7mg.  Right now I'm on 7.5 and it seems to be working okay, I think MusicNeverStops is probably right about 10mg being the cut-off.

 

I don't know how to answer your question.  Everyone is different, but things i look for that are signs I am starting to have symptoms: irritability, paranoia and people acting cautiously around me.  Also, if you have someone you trust they can tell you if they notice anything.  My problem is I tend to think it's their problem and I'm fine.

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Well, I've started the transition to Abilify.

 

For the next two weeks, I'm taking 550mg of Seroquel, and 2mg of Abilify.  Then assuming I'm doing well, my pdoc will keep upping the Abilify and lowering the Seroquel.  I'm very nervous... nervous of getting sick again and not knowing it.  

 

Pdoc said my target dose will be between 10mg and 15mg of Abilify.  

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