Invega Sustenna Injection VS Abilify Injection (?)

Son is in the hospital and we are going to change him to an injection depot since he has a tendency to be non-compliant. I spoke with his pdoc today and the first one he suggested was Abilify injection which surprised me since the only med son is on since stopping the others is Abilify 10 mg and he is certainly not doing well. Pdoc explained that Abilify injection is much better than the pills.

I asked him about Invega Sustenna and he said that was a very good injection also. I asked him in his opinion which one would be better to handle positive symptoms the best and he thought for a second and said probably Invega Sustenna would be somewhat better for that.

I also asked him about Latuda since I’ve been interested in this med – he said Latuda has mixed results and he wasn’t sure about prescribing this for son, particularly since it is not depot injection.

Son’s pdoc is the head Psychiatrist overseeing two large practices in the Atlanta area, very well respected, so I greatly value his opinion.

But I would like to hear if anyone has had experience with either of these injectables, Abilify or Invega Sustenna, pros/cons?

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I don`t know anything about those two medications, but the injections are great news! Good luck***

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I have had little personal experience with Abilify. My son was on it and didn’t like it. Said it made him want to do things and not want to do things at the same time. I have seen reference to it being a partial dopamine agonist…

What a hard decision… Maybe if he has not been tried on Invega then perhaps that could be looked at first, knowing that Abilify doesn’t seem to help him.

If he is on a better AP for him, then perhaps adding orals like Latuda would have better results.

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Hi @lovemyson - I was not on the injections, but I was on Abilify for years and on Invega for a short while.
Tryng out psych meds is a big crapshoot - some work, some help a bit but not completely, some dont work at all and some do more harm or worsen SZ. Abilify for me actually worsened my condition, increasing my positive symptoms - but this is me, many people like Abilify because it is easy on the body, and that it is. In my opinion, Abilify is not a good med for those having to deal with moderate to severe schizophrenia - Invega would probably be a better choice for more moderate to severe cases. Invega is an extended form of paliperidone - the active metabolite found in Risperdal; these 2 drugs are very similar, so if your son was on Risperdal before and it really did not work for him, chances are that Invega will not work for him either - but this is not always the case, antipsychotics are funny this way.
I would discuss the situation further with the doctor and weigh out the positive and negatives with any medication being considered. Very soon I will be getting off of Risperdal (health reasons) and switching over to Latuda, and if Latuda does not work out for me, its over to another antipsychotic, probably perphenazine. In the world of psychiatric medication taking - its all about trying then moving on to the next one - Good luck with everything


Thanks @bridgecomet @BarbieBF @Wave for your comments.

I have always had it in my mind that Abilify was more or less an “add-on” to other AP’s, not really containing the properties necessary to control sz symptoms. And the way it is advertised on tv, magazines, etc. there is no mention of sz, the ads typically say bi-polar depression.

However, I went on the Current Psychiatry website re the Abilify depot injection and the first thing says it says is “for treatment of adult schizophrenia” and after reading the entire article I do feel a little more comfortable with it for his treatment, but there is still a doubt.

@Wave thanks for your helpful info. Son has never been on Risperdal, so it is just the complete unknown for us. If you don’t mind me asking, were your health problems caused by the Risperdal? I hope you have good luck with Latuda. I will be very interested to hear how you are doing. As info, son was on perphenazine for some time, along with Zyprexa, and it did really seem to help his delusional thinking.

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Hi @lovemyson - risperidone or brand name Risperdal in my opinion and in the opinion of many psychiatric professionals, is one of the more effective atypicals. It is related to Haldol in may ways. Risperdal does usually cause some weight gain and does increase blood glucose levels, but not as bad as Zyprexa, another effective antipsychotic.
I am getting off of Risperdal for many reasons, but none have to do with how it makes me feel mentally. In my opinion it is one of the most effective antipsychotics I have been on - It does a good job at killing off my positive symptoms and does not cause too many negative symptoms at a lower dose - I am currently on 2 and a half mg.
Risperdal does raise prolactin levels, more so than many of the other atypicals. Higher prolactin levels can cause a whole bunch of negative physical problems, such as diminished libido and other problems, too many to list. These physical problems do not crop up all of the time, but it can happen. All antipsychotics have side effects - its all about being on the right dose - I now go as low as possible with these meds and work my way up slowly if necessary. My health problems are not life threatening and some of the more annoying problems are directly caused by Risperdal, but in my opinion Risperdal is worth looking at - talking it over with the doctor is always helpful, Again best of luck with whatever you decide. Also my high liver enzyme count was not caused by the Risperdal, Depakote was the culprit

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I had a pdoc who couldn’t wait to put me on Invega Sustenna. He had great results with it. But I don’t do injections, so that was out. This was before Abilify Maintaina (or however you spell it). I’ve been told that Abilify is weak, and is sometimes counter-productive. Like @Wave mentioned, it increased my positive symptoms. I think patients should be tried on the oral dose before receiving an injection that may not work and cause misery.

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One other thing about Invega - its active metabolite is 9-hydroxyrisperidone (I think I got that right). Anyway, all that means is Invega is broken down into Risperdal. Invega, no matter how much Janssen wants to deny it, is a patent-extender. Once Risperdal came off patent, Invega popped up. Just another cash cow with no real benefit over Risperdal.


My son agreed to take abilify injection. He’s been taking the pills for a couple months. The problem is I can’t find anywhere that will give it to him. Any suggestions? We live in NW suburbs of Chicago.

Hi LGmom - welcome to the Boards.

Between my son’s pdoc, myself, and his pdoc at the hospital, we finally all agreed to start him on the Invega Sustenna Injection.

We pick up the injection at our CVS Pharmacy and son takes it to his pdoc and a nurse there gives him the injection. We could let the pdoc provide the injection, but it is cheaper to pick up at CVS.

I think your son’s pdoc’s office would administer the shot. Have you checked with them?

I’m on Invega Sustania. I haven’t noticed the side effects being too bad, with the exception of reduced libido. I’m not sure how it works on symptoms, since meds hardly have changed my symptoms in the past.

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I’ve been taking the Invega Sustenna injection 234mg for the past 8 months and it took between 5 - 8 months for the positive symptoms to subside completely to the point where I’m not hallucinating, im not delusional, a lot of the worrisome intrusive thoughts are gone, voices are almost non existent, I’m not paranoid, I’m not talking to myself anymore even when no one isn’t around, suicidal thoughts are gone too and any other positive symptoms that you can imagine.

The only problem I’m dealing with are the side effects especially the low libido (not producing as much sperm) and the negative symptoms of the illness which consists of cognitive and memory problems, depressive moods, fatigue and just overall feelings of anxiety. Lately I’ve also been having trouble getting a good nights because of the constant dreams and my mind just not shutting off all the way. It’s a complete pain in the ass and exhausting dealing with this everyday.

My psychiatrist is going to lower the dose after next month so hopefully the side effects subside and things get a little bit better. She did send me to get a blood test so hopefully the results are good.

I just have to hang in there and hope that things get better. Just thought I’d share my experience.

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This post is 4 years old. I’m really hoping they’ve made the decision already.

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Oh thanks for that I didn’t see the date. Just been searching on information about Invega Sustenna and this topic popped up so I thought I’d share my experience.