History of Abilify
Approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2002, Abilify was originally developed by Otsuka Pharmaceutical Company, which then partnered with Bristol-Myers Squibb to market the antipsychotic drug. In the years since its approval, a number of studies have linked Abilify to an increased risk of compulsive behaviors like pathological gambling, binge eating and hypersexual behavior in individuals with no history of such problems prior to taking the antipsychotic drug. In 2007, Bristol-Myers Squibb paid $545 million to resolve federal charges involving the illegal marketing of Abilify to nursing homes, despite the fact that the medication has been shown to increase the risk of death in elderly patients with dementia. Today, Abilify is one of the best-selling medications in the world, generating roughly $6.8 billion during the one-year period from April 2013 to March 2014.
Some doctors believe that the alleged link between Abilify treatment and pathological gambling has to do with the way the antipsychotic drug works with dopamine in the brain. The atypical antipsychotic currently carries a “black box” warning highlighting the increased risk of death in elderly individuals, and suicidal thoughts or actions in adolescents and young adults.
Side Effects of Abilify
- Compulsive gambling
- Extreme overeating
- Hypersexual behavior
- Excessive spending
- Suicidal thoughts or actions
What is Abilify?
Abilify (aripiprazole) is an atypical antipsychotic drug marketed by Otsuka and Bristol-Myers Squibb as an add-on treatment to other antidepressant medications, and as a standalone treatment for mental illnesses like schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, irritability associated with autism, and major depression. Like other new-generation antipsychotic drugs, Abilify works on both dopamine and serotonin to improve mood, and is associated with fewer movement side effects, like tardive dyskinesia, than first-generation antipsychotics like Thorazine and Haldol. Abilify is unique though in that it works by either enhancing serotonin and dopamine levels or inhibiting them, to keep a balance, which is why it is often referred to as a stabilizer.
Why File an Abilify Lawsuit?
Recent Abilify lawsuits claim:
- Otsuka and Bristol-Myers Squibb manufactuered and sold a defective medication.
- Manufacturers concealed the potential health risks of Abilify, including the mental and psychological side effects.
- Abilify labels warn of other side effects, like suicidal thoughts or actions, it makes no mention of the risk of compulsive behavior.
- Otsuka and Bristol-Myers Squibb failed to warn the public about serious Abilify side effects.
- Otsuka and Bristol-Myers Squibb improperly marketed of the antipsychotic drug.
- Manufactuerers misrepresented the safety and effectiveness of Abilify, thus preventing individuals making a fully informed decision regarding treatment.
Abilify Lawsuit Information
Compulsive gambling side effects of Abilify drive users to gamble by any means necessary, including borrowing money and running up credit card debt, and while this Abilify risk may not cause physical harm to victims, it can lead to debilitating psychological stress and may even ruin the lives of victims and their loved ones. As a result, Bristol-Myers and Otsuka face a growing number of product liability lawsuits filed on behalf of former Abilify users who have experienced compulsive gambling, hypersexual behavior, excessive spending or extreme overeating. These Abilify lawsuits allege that Otsuka and Bristol-Myers did not properly warn the public about the potential for the antipsychotic drug to cause compulsive actions in individuals without a prior history of such behavior.
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