My 13 year old daughter was given 'Abilify' to help control urges/impulses by her Dr. a behavior specialist.
She was on the drug for 10 days. The morning of the 11th day she had a twitching of her lip, she dismissed it as more of an annoyance. By 4:00 her neck was twisted in a painful and involuntary position, and her lips were uncontrollably puckering with her tongue moving in an uncontrollable manor. My daughter thought she was possessed. She was scared to death because her body was not responding to what her brain was telling it. She was unable to stop any of the gestures but was well aware that she was doing them.
We took her to the nearest emergency facility with the bottles of the new meds she started taking less than 2 weeks prior. The Dr. immediately gave her a shot of vistral which calmed her body almost as benadryl would. The Dr. said it would help her to relax and make her sleepy. He advised us to not give my daughter the 'Abilify' until we told her Dr. the behavior specialist of this incident.
Once we reached him, the Dr. seemed to be concerned, but more so that she might have taken another kind of product that may in combination have given her this bad reaction. We explained to him, she was so scared with her body acting out in a tourettes sort of fashion that she would have divulged any and all to us. She just wanted her body to stop the repetitive gestures. Her face was completely distorted. Unlike anything we've seen before. She had NO CONTROL of her facial expressions. Her mouth was open and she couldn't shut it. She had drool coming from her mouth because she couldn't swallow properly. We explained that the emergency room Dr. was able to move her neck and head around and he also was able to close her mouth without causing her any pain. It was that she herself could not close her own mouth and she herself could not shift her neck and head because it continued to pull to the 1 side. Her specialist continued to ask if she could've possibly taken allergy medications. We again said she didn't take anything and that as a matter of fact she had missed her dose of the 'Abilify' the night before. We told him that after the emergency room Dr. advised us not to give her the 'Abilify' again until the specialist was notified we grew concerned and started doing some research on this 'Abilify'. It's all there every symptom my daughter had is there listed in the side effects. There's even a name for her symptoms it's 'Tardive dyskinesia'.
It also mentions that studies have NOT been done on children under the age of 18. It sickens me that the risk factor was right under my nose and yet I trusted a Dr. instead of checking into this medication for myself.
This specialist isn't hearing what we are saying. We're telling him my daughter had a very bad reaction to this medication... a reaction that on the Abilify site states could possibly be permanent. We are so thankful that it's been almost 24 hours and she hasn't had a facial twitch or spasm.
We need for this story to be told so other parents know what they're up against when it comes to the risks of this medication.
There needs to be more of a warning put out there for parents of innocent children.