Aripiprazole ER Injection Dosage
When treating schizophrenia with aripiprazole ER injection, dosing guidelines will be based on how you respond to the medicine, other drugs you are taking, and various other factors. This medication comes as a liquid that is injected once a month. The starting amount is usually 400 mg; however, if you develop bothersome side effects or have certain medical conditions, you may need a lower dose.
The dose of aripiprazole ER injection (Abilify Maintena™) your healthcare provider recommends will vary, depending on a number of factors, including:
- How you respond to the medication
- Other medical conditions you may have
- Other medications you are taking.
As is always the case, do not adjust your dosage unless your healthcare provider specifically tells you to do so.
The standard initial dosage of aripiprazole ER injection for the treatment of schizophrenia is 400 mg injected once a month. If bothersome side effects occur, your healthcare provider may decrease the amount to 300 mg once a month.
For the first 14 days after your first injection, you will need to continue taking an oral antipsychotic medication, such as oral Abilify®, to provide symptom control while aripiprazole ER injection begins working.
"Once a month" can be defined as once per calendar month (every 30 or 31 days), or once every four weeks (every 28 days). Doses should not be given closer than 26 days apart. If you miss a dose, consult your healthcare provider as soon as possible. Standard instructions for missed doses are as follows:
- Missed second or third dose:
- If less than five weeks since previous dose: give the missed dose as soon as possible
- If more than five weeks since previous dose: give the missed dose and add an oral antipsychotic medication for the first 14 days
- Missed fourth (or later) dose:
- If less than six weeks since previous dose: give the missed dose as soon as possible
- If more than six weeks since previous dose: give the missed dose and add an oral antipsychotic medication for the first 14 days.
People who are taking certain other medications may need lower-than-normal aripiprazole ER injection dosages, due to possible drug interactions (see Drug Interactions With Aripiprazole ER Injection for more information).
Also, people who are "CYP 2D6 poor metabolizers" should usually receive lower dosages. If you are a CYP 2D6 poor metabolizer, this means that some of your liver enzymes do not break down aripiprazole ER injection as fast as usual. Lab tests can determine whether you are a CYP 2D6 poor metabolizer (such tests are usually only performed if you seem unusually sensitive to the normal dosages of Abilify or other drugs that are metabolized by CYP 2D6).