Officials at the Alliance for the Mentally Ill of Iowa are excited about the potential of a new drug recently approved by the F-D-A for use in treating mental illness. Alliance executive director Margaret Stout says the drug is called Abilify She says they’re excited because this drug reportedly does not cause the weight gain that is common for other drugs used to treat mental illness. Stout says the weight gain often leads to other medical problems, such as diabetes. Stout says they don’t know for sure how this drug will help Iowans, but she says any new drug is important. She says there are not that many drugs offered for people with mental illness, so any new drug offers some hope. Stout says this drug has the potential to help thousands of Iowans. She says national statistics show that one-percent of the population suffers from schizophrenia, and when you add in other things like depression and bipolar disorder, that climbs to five percent. Stout says the new drug became available this month.
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