Abilify and Gambling, Sexual Addiction, Compulsive Shopping and Other Impulsive Behaviors

Harvey Kirk

By Harvey Kirk
Posted May 2, 2016


As a result of the failure to provide adequate warnings and information for consumers and doctors in the United States about the potential link between Abilify and gambling, compulsive sexual activity and other impulsive behaviors, the lawyers at Saiontz & Kirk, P.A. are reviewing potential product liability lawsuits against Bristol-Myers Squibb and Otsuka Pharmaceuticals.

Abilify Gambling Lawyers

Did You or a Loved One Suffer Gambling Losses or Other Damages from Abilify Impulsive Behaviors?


For years, information has been available to the drug makers that side effects of Abilify may lead to a number of destructive and impulsive behaviors, including:

  • Compulsive Gambling
  • Excessive Shopping
  • Sex Addiction

These Abilify impulsivity problems can have a devastating impact on an individual’s financial stability, family and overall mental health.

In addition, the compulsive behaviors may place individuals at a risk of contracting sexually transmitted diseases, destroy families, cause loss of employment or other damages to the overall quality of life.

In many cases of impulsive behavior, it is hard for family members and loved ones to believe that an individual can’t “just stop” their behavior by trying really hard. It is often hard to conceptualize that a drug can cause psychological side effects that affect behavior.

Most people can accept that a drug can cause a rash, a headache, dry mouth or even cancer. However, it is much harder to understand that a prescription drug may also impact an individual’s brain and cause them to spend their money gambling, shopping or engaging in other reckless behavior. What’s more, individuals experiencing compulsive addictions often attempt to hide their behaviors or may even violate the law attempting to fill their irrational craving.

Compulsive gambling is a major psychiatric disorder, which is recognized in the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, reflecting the clear evidence that gambling problems are activated by reward systems similar to those associated with drug abuse, producing behavior symptoms similar to those seen with substance abuse disorders.

Abilify gamblers may take out loans or spend savings meant for retirement. Compulsive shoppers on Abilify may resort to shoplifting, or run up massive credit card debts. Those with an Abilify sex addiction may engage in solicitation, commit infidelity, unwanted pregnancies and contract sexually transmitted disease, which they could then spread to other spouses and sexual partners.

Lawyers for Abilify Impulsive Behaviors

Although there is clear evidence that the drug makers knew or should have known about the link between Abilify and gambling since at least 2009, it appears that they placed their desire for profits before the safety of consumers and their families by withholding warnings and information from users of the drug in the United States.

Failure to ensure that users and the medical community were aware of the potential Abilify impulsivity risks prevented individuals and family members from recognizing the symptoms were caused by the prescription medication. In many cases, the behavior stops shortly after Abilify is no longer used, providing strong evidence of a causal connection, known as challenge-dechallenge.

The Abilify lawyers at Saiontz & Kirk, P.A. are reviewing lawsuits for individuals who have suffered compulsive behaviors, like gambling, shopping and sex addition, due to the impact of Abilify on the brain.

If you, a friend, or family member have suffered compulsive behavior due to Abilify use, request a free consultation and claim evaluation.

13 Comments • Add Your Comments

  • Sheila says:

    Why are you trying to sue ability only ,when meripax does the same thing. Every lawyer I’ve talked to says the’re only suing the meripax company for gambling . Is it that lawyers only want the easiest compulsion . Doesn’t anyone understand what a shopping compulstion does to a family. I’ve ran up almost 200,000.00 in credit cards. I’ve gambled our future away .

    Posted on May 18, 2016 at 9:28 am

  • Donna says:

    Been taking Abilify for a couple years. Have bipolar 2 and generalized anxiety disorder. Shopping is a compulsive problem and I’m heavily in debt from my compulsive behavior.

    Posted on March 16, 2017 at 2:26 pm

  • Wendy says:

    I have been on Abilify for about 7 years… at first I started overspending… shopping when I should have paid bills… then I started shopping and doing returns… returning all the things I couldn’t afford… then from there I began shoplifting… and that was Crazy!! I began “thinking” about shoplifting ALL the time!! And I couldn’t stop myself… I ended up getting arrested for shoplifting… and STILL continued to shoplift… I went to jail for shoplifting and stayed on Abilify in jail… I was sitting in jail “thinking” of new ways to shoplift and Not get caught!! It was insane!! When I got outta jail I continued to Shoplift!! Knowing the consequences of my actions and where it would lead me back to jail but I couldn’t Stop myself… I got caught 2 more times… that’s when my Dr. informed me that The manufacturers of Abilify “Just” released information about the adverse effects from Abilify!! I immediately Stopped taking Abilify although it’s recommended to be weened off.. I couldn’t risk another episode of stealing… I have been off of Abilify since January! And can I not express myself enough when I say the “Urges” to shoplift have STOPPED!! I No longer fantasize about shoplifting! I Don’t think about shopping or going to stores… it’s like my brain just did a 180 and it Doesn’t even cross my mind to shoplift anymore!! Abilify RUINED MY LIFE!! I am now a felon… and my daughter was taken from me because The people who have her Don’t Believe that a drug can make you do such things!! I haven’t seen my daughter since Christmas!! And All because of a greedy pill manufacturer that refused to release such pertinent information!! I hope my story helps some people realize that it’s the drug!! Not the person wanting to steal!! I just hope I can recover from this and the new charges I’m facing??? Well I hope the court has mercy on me and doesn’t throw me in jail over this!!

    Posted on April 23, 2017 at 4:27 pm

  • Karen says:

    Wow!! Wendy I am so sorry to hear about your situation with your child in the whole shoplifting thing . I too have been a victim of Abilify I stop taking it in 2010 but have severe Gambling problems even to this day I don’t understand most people are staying after they stop taking it there desire stopped but mine seems to have increased I don’t understand what’s going on . I never gambled before. I also had a severe sex addiction now that has subsided . I never dreamed a drug that was meant to help me would destroyed me. I gambled away my kids money for school they almost didn’t graduate from high school which was a private high school because I failed to pay the bill. I would meet men online and meet strangers who I had only spoken to online to have sex with caught especially transmitted disease thank God it was a curable one. All not my behavior. I’m still in overage a drug could do such damage to your brain. I wish you the best your in my prayers

    Posted on May 21, 2017 at 4:23 pm

  • Brandon says:

    I became a sex addict I became absist with shoplifting also a drug addict I wound up going to prison for 6 years as I look back at my behavior it was so out of character

    Posted on July 6, 2017 at 8:36 am

  • Susan says:

    I have been on Abilify and I am shopping like crazy and when I run out of money I’m now shoplifting it’s an urge that has to be fed every day, that’s the best way to describe it. Also random sexual encounters with strangers. I’m unable to pay my rent and bills I have shopped so much.

    Posted on March 12, 2018 at 7:29 pm

  • Diana says:

    I began taking Abilify in 2013 for depression and mood stabilizer. That’s when my shopping addiction began. I spent my whole paycheck buying things I didn’t need and then when I didn’t have money to purchase anything, I started shoplifting. I couldn’t stop thinking about shoplifting, it was a drug to me. It would consume my entire day thinking about it. Got arrested twice, my husband divorced me, then my sex addiction got worse. Ended up pregnant by a guy a had just met, and now because of my criminal record, and compulsive behavior, I lost custody of my 2 year old daughter. I hate my life.

    Posted on March 15, 2018 at 4:30 pm

  • marie says:

    if I can prove I lost my job due to excessive flirting with guys at work, will I have a case?

    I didn’t know Abilify was making me gossip about everybody non-stop and I couldn’t stop flirting so that was the end of my career.

    Posted on April 30, 2018 at 8:27 pm

  • Ethel says:

    If any of you’re shocked at what Abilify has done to your life then you’ll really be shocked by what it’s done to my GD (I have custody since she was 3mths old) she’s been on Abilify for several years and I noticed she had an obsession with sex, watching sex videos, talking to adult men online and sending nude pics and just a few weeks ago at age 8, almost 9 she said she was bleeding down there now I’m thinking way too young for that so I kept after her until she admitted that she’d taken a plastic tube and inserted into herself until she was be was bleeding, I’m amazed that a child would even do such a thing but after seeing the stories about this drug I now think I know why she’s been doing these things and hate that I’ve been so tough on her as I don’t think she could help it.

    Posted on July 4, 2018 at 9:03 pm

  • Mohamed says:

    I’m on Abilify for the last six years. I have a problem with Porn Addiction, stealing, Anxiety, Insomnia, restless, Anxiety, and overspending. All the above comments of the other people literally describe me. I can’t believe that all of what I’m suffering are just side effects of Abilify. It’s about two weeks since that last dose of Abilify. No more Abilify at all. I stopped it immediately although I know it’s completely wrong. I can’t tolerate living with this medication anymore. I can’t say that all of the side effects have gone, I’m just waiting for them to be gone as happened with the persons above. I hope everything goes well. Thank you

    Posted on November 18, 2019 at 5:25 am

  • Marvin says:

    Can abilify cause divorce?

    Posted on December 20, 2020 at 2:13 pm

  • Frederick says:

    Hypersexuality by Abilify put me in prison for life. Was never investigated about my medications or my mental health status before my trial. I was denied proper judicial process.

    Posted on April 15, 2022 at 4:46 pm

  • Julie says:

    Extreme impulsivity over the past 5 years of taking abilify for depression. I spend money I don’t have, shoplifting as well.

    Posted on December 26, 2023 at 5:41 pm

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