Aripiprazole and Impulse-Control Disorders: A Recent FDA Warning and a Case Report

Rohanjeet Dhillon, Tarun Bastiampillai, Claudia Cao, Eckert Thomas G, Prashant Tibrewal

    Research output: Contribution to journalLetterpeer-review

    10 Citations (Scopus)


    Aripiprazole is a unique antipsychotic with partial dopamine agonist properties increasingly linked to pathological gambling. The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) released in May 2016 a safety announcement in relation to aripiprazole and the induction of impulse-control disorders (ICD), inclusive of pathological gambling, hypersexuality, compulsive shopping, and compulsive eating.
    This case report adds to the existing literature and is one of the few specifically linking aripiprazole with induction of multiple ICD in a single patient with no history of ICD, with complete resolution of these symptoms following its cessation. The FDA safety warning means that clinicians should specifically screen for ICD before prescribing aripiprazole, educate patients about potential risks, and specifically monitor for ICD following commencement or dose increases. More research is required to specifically identify the dopamine receptor pathway and specific dopamine agonists involved in the induction of ICD, which could then lead to more specific therapeutic targets for pathological gambling and ICD.
    Original languageEnglish
    Article number16l02003
    Number of pages1
    JournalThe Primary Care Companion for CNS Disorders
    Issue number1
    Publication statusPublished - 12 Jan 2017


    • Aripiprazole
    • impulse-control disorders
    • US FDA
    • Conduct disorders
    • Disruptive
    • Impulse-control


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