A California Abilify lawsuit may be an option for patients who suffered from compulsive behaviors after using the prescription drug. Abilify is a prescription antipsychotic used to treat schizophrenia, bipolar disorder, and major depressive disorder; however, lawsuits allege that the drug causes compulsive gambling, resulting in severe financial consequences. Affected patients and their families may be eligible to file a California Abilify lawsuit and pursue compensation for damages.
For more information, contact Attorney Group for California today. Our consultations are free, confidential and without any obligation on your part. We can help answer your questions, and if you choose to pursue a claim we can connect you with an affiliated California Abilify lawsuit attorney who can assist you throughout the legal process.
What is Abilify and How Does It Work?
Abilify is a prescription medication used to treat symptoms associated with schizophrenia and bipolar disorder. The drug is also used with other antidepressants to treat major depressive disorder. People who suffer from irritability associated with autistic disorder and tic disorders such as Tourette’s syndrome may use Abilify to treat the symptoms of their condition as well.
Abilify works by binding to dopamine and serotonin, neurotransmitters located in the brain and other parts of the body that regulate movement, emotional responses, and intestinal movements. Unlike most atypical antipsychotics, Abilify works by acting on those chemical receptors to either stimulate or reduce stimulation and keep those receptors balanced.
Abilify Side Effects
Side effects and allergic reactions may develop in individuals who take Abilify to treat certain mental disorders. Possible side effects and allergic reactions include:
- Itching or hives
- Swelling in the face or hands
- Tightness in the chest
- Trouble breathing
- Anxiety, irritability, restlessness, nervousness, or difficulty sleeping
- Unusual behavior, including depressed mood or thoughts of suicide
- Excessive hunger or thirst
- Flu-like symptoms, including fever, chills, cough, sore throat, and body aches
- High fever, sweating, or uneven heartbeat
- Muscle stiffness
- Lightheadedness, dizziness, or fainting
- Jerky muscle movements, especially in the face, tongue, or jaw
- Seizures or tremors
Abilify and Compulsive Gambling
According to the Mayo Clinic, compulsive gambling (also called gambling disorder) is the uncontrollable urge to keep gambling despite the toll it takes on people and their loved ones. Like alcohol and other addictive drugs, gambling can stimulate the brain’s reward system, leading to compulsive behavior and addiction.
In July 2011, The British Journal of Psychiatry published a set of three short reports that suggested adverse changes with regards to pathological gambling in patients who took aripiprazole, also known as Abilify. The case studies were conducted at the National Problem Gambling Clinic in London, United Kingdom. Although the three patients reported a positive response to the drug when used to treat their symptoms, they also noted adverse changes in their approach to gambling and experiences that seemed different from other gamblers.
Compulsive Gambling Warnings Associated with Abilify
In 2012, the European Medicines Agency (EMA) requested that the product information for prescription Abilify be updated to include warnings about compulsive gambling. According to the EMA, post-marketing reports of pathological gambling have been reported among patients who were prescribed Abilify, regardless of any prior history of compulsive gambling and those patients.
Likewise, Canadian regulators issued an update for product labels of Abilify advising patients of an increased risk of impulsive behaviors, including pathological gambling and hypersexuality. A Canadian Safety Review published in November 2015 indicated a connection between Abilify and certain pathological behaviors, including compulsive gambling.
California Compulsive Gambling Lawsuit
A California lawsuit submitted in January 2016 alleges that Bristol-Myers Squibb and Otsuka Pharmaceutical, makers of Abilify, have wrongfully and unjustly profited at the expense of patient safety by failing to include language about Abilify’s alleged association with gambling. The lawsuit claims that the drug makers knew or should have known about the increased risk of serious side effects, including compulsive gambling, when the drug was taken as prescribed and intended. Additionally, the lawsuit alleges that substantial financial, mental, and physical damages occurred as a result of the harmful effects of compulsive gambling.
How A California Abilify Lawsuit Can Help
Drug manufacturers have a duty to ensure their products are accompanied by full and accurate instructions and warnings to guide prescribing doctors and other health care providers in making treatment decisions. If a drug maker fails to fulfill this duty, it could be held liable in lawsuits for injuries and damages that may result.
When patients suffer from severe side effects from a dangerous or defective drug, they may be entitled to compensation for their injuries and damages. The types of losses that can be recovered include:
- Economic Losses
- Medical and other treatment expenses
- Pain, suffering, and mental anguish
- Loss of income or ability to work
If the conduct of a drug company in manufacturing and selling drug is found to be highly reckless, punitive damages may be awarded to punish the company and deter similar conduct in the future.
Patients who have suffered loss as a result of compulsive gambling or other compulsive behaviors are encouraged to speak with a California Abilify lawsuit attorney to learn more about their rights and remedies.
For more information, contact Attorney Group for California.
When you contact us, an attorney will follow up with you to speak with you about your case or answer questions that you might have. There is no cost or obligation to speak with us, and any information you provide will be kept confidential.
Please note that the law limits the time you have to pursue a claim or file a lawsuit for an injury. If you think you have a case, you should not delay taking action.