Family and Caregiver Schizophrenia Discussion Forum

One Month on Invega-Sustenna

Invega has a good reputation for a class of schizophrenia. It wasn’t good for the person I take care of.
It seems he had the wrong diagnosis because he has fully recovered on 10mg Zuclopenthixol daily.

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Hello all,
My daddy is 61 and has been mentally ill since he was 30. I had to have him committed as he states his meds are poison and kill him and he is known to cheek meds. I lost my mother 12 years ago and don’t have the funds to get legal guardianship now but have been able to get him into a senior community and home health to help administer meds. He began the invega injection last week on 9/15 & today 9/21 he seems to be unhappy. Maybe the week start injection has worn off. Should I ask the Dr to raise the injection to 156 MG on Friday? Please help me I’m alone in this journey and am the baby. Thank you

When you say your father is “unhappy” what exactly do you mean? Is he delusional, is he hearing voices, what exactly is different from say a month ago when he was on his previous medication (and, I’m assuming, things were ok).

The best thing you can do is try to explain as clearly as possible to the doctor what problem your father is having - so he can make a good decision on how best to help him. You have to be your father’s advocate to make sure the doctor understands as well as possible how well your father is doing and what the issues are.

Here is more about his medication - so you understand what the common side effects are:

Was he kept on other antipsychotics orally or were they discontinued? It takes up to 6 days after an injection for the drug to begin metabolizing and become available. It then stays available long enough to overlap with the next injection.

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@Vallpen they tried ability first and then the invega oral but couldn’t see any improvement. I told them that he was fooling them and I’m not even there. He’s been sick a very long time and can put on quite the show but it doesn’t last long. He’s scared of the medicine says he can’t work and makes him die. It doesn’t but he was exposed to Haldol in the 80s when it did feel like you were dying. I convinced him with me by his side to take the injection. He’s in Psych Ward and I cried that daddy I want to take you home but you have to take the medicine. So long story I’m sorry but this is why he is getting the injection because he won’t take it orally.

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Yes, that is the reason most people get the injection. Just understand that if he is not on another antipsychotic that it takes a few days for the drug to become available in his system. The doctor may well decide to increase the dose if he is not responding to the first dose.

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*abilify… I think at this point he’d been without the antipsychotic for so long and was on oral Zyprexa when my mom was alive and I’m seeing a dramatic improvement. His Dr has been amazing he said let’s convince him to do the injection vs the court order to inject him. I think daddy was to tired to fight anymore. I think he was tired of the voices and hallucinations maybe. I will forever be here as I’m so grateful to find someone going through what I am as well…


Daddy was released from the hospital and 10 days in now with Invega injection. 1 week and now only 3 days in on monthly. He had a rough night with no sleep and back to paranoid behavior today. Did the nurses not note this at the hospital, I wonder? Should I wait a couple weeks or months before I lose Faith in the new meds? Only looking for opinions and experience. Thank y’all

Maybe he needs some time to adjust to being back home and away from the routine of the hospital?
Or, maybe he’s exhausted from trying to hold it together while everyone watched his every move?

I’ve read hear that it takes 6 days for the meds in the injection to be effective, so if he’s only 3 days in, maybe things will be better in a few days, or next week? I’ve honestly only heard good things about that shot both from people online and from people I know IRL who have family members using it.

My son is recently out of the hospital - tomorrow will make 2 weeks - and he’s had a lot of ups and downs since then, even on the meds. I don’t know about your dad, but I think the hospital is traumatic for a lot of people.

My son is on his 5th injection and he is improving over time. I would give it more time. His doc said he was much better and come back in 3 months. I’m hoping my son will continue on with the injections. Good luck to you and your Dad. Is he taking anything else? My son is taking Doxepin and Lithium and I think they help him sleep.


@Mom2 no my dad won’t take anything else. I even tried to suggest just a melatonin vitamin at night tor help with sleep. The home I was raised in that mother left to me when she died has basically deteriorated around him and I’m forced to move him to a senior center and demolish the house. This is going to send his illness in a tailspin and I know it. He argued with me tonight in front of my 5 yr old son that he was going to sue the bank and insurance company, my son looks at me and says mommy don’t be mean to Pawpaw broke my heart I’m not being mean he gets in his spells and argues with me when I’m talking and now makes me look like the bad guy and a bad example to my son… I just hope the meds do work and quickly

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My son is now on Zyprexa at night and sleeping like a baby. Stays up all day. It’s a full time job keeping him busy and active but it also keeps him out of trouble. I feel like I live two lives. Your sweet son is just being respectful and you have done a good job. Hang in there. I wish you did t have to go through this. God bless you all.

I realize that sounded like it was simple and it truly isn’t. It is day to day and lots of prayers going up throughout the day. I had better get to bed so I can do it all over again :nerd_face:

If it’s not an injection he won’t take it. I just got him from the hospital and he thinks everything is poison. He was on Zyprexa 8 yrs ago and thinks it will kill him

My partner has been on invega for almost 3 months and about aweek before he is due he relapses into voices and delusions quickly. Anyone else experience this? I think I will contact his psyc and perhaps he will raise the dosage.

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Please take care with this. Invega can be a real problem for the wrong patient. Not everyone can tolerate the recommended doses of antipsychotics, and are better changed, or sometimes lowered. If he’s showing confusion, like the person I take care of, who then went on to develop amnesia where he didn’t know me, the psychiatrists thought it was caused from schizophrenia. They kept him in hospital in this state for five weeks, until they finally listened to me and realized the symptoms were caused by a reaction to Invega. A bigger dose is not necessarily better. If your Dad is sensitive, a higher dose could increase serious side effects. In our case, it was liver damage and heart problems. In many cases, the psychiatrist don’t know what to do and are flying blind, but doing their best. Sometimes they are treated like the enemy and feel defensive, but their job is very difficult and there are not many sign posts to tell them what is going on. Some people cannot tolerate certain medications which make them feel so bad, they think they are being poisoned. This theme comes up a lot. It is not necessarily paranoia.

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@Frances1 I don’t know what to think is Schizophrenia or real effects of medicine. He won’t tell the Dr the truth except he’s having side effects that he can’t be having. I can see obvious effects and maybe once the home health nurse sees him a regular bases she’ll be able to convey better than I can. He will NOT let me go in the the Dr starts acting out yelling saying he is going to sue me and the government and I can’t have that behavior in front of my son, my life was damaged by him fighting all the time with my mom and I divorced my ex husband because I won’t fight and argue around my baby. He will have a happy life no matter what. He had a hip replacement from a suicidal attempt of driving his truck head on with an 18 wheeler on the HWY that was 30 years ago or 28 and it needs to replaced, he says the medicine makes him cripple but it’s the bad hip it’s stainless steel and should be replaced with porcelain. I have no choice but to let invega run its course and if it isn’t doing its job the Dr will have to determine it I don’t know what else to do, this is so hard. Thankfully home health and the Dr have me down to discuss his medical with so maybe I’ll get there through them without him knowing. I hear everyone reacts to antipsych meds differently but he’d been without anything for 8 years, his cousin told him nothing was wrong with him and he believed it. Now he’s dead and out of our lives and my dad is left in the worst shape ever. He did so good in the hospital but now he is back to awful he must have been putting on a show. Feeling so defeated

I think we all need to try to be supportive of our family members with sz when they take medication.

Yes, all of the medications for the management of psychosis symptoms have side effects. Some of these are severe (which is possible with any type of medication), but without medication (both anti-psychotic and anti-depressant naive) my family member has had four episodes of serious psychosis in three years, each increasing in severity. To the point of disaster.

I agree that if a family member does not have schizophrenia, they should not be treated for it. But if they do and it’s severe, the right medication at the right dose offers the possibility of recovery or improvement.

I understand that there are mistakes by doctors, terrible side effects, etc. In general, when we go to the doctor, the statistically low odds of misdiagnosis and incorrect prescriptions don’t stop any of us from taking antibiotics and other needed medications.

We are all having extremely difficult times trying to get treatment for our family members with serious mental illness. When people question the professionals and the treatments, I guess that’s part of making sure our family members are in the best situations available, but we have to support people during these difficult, if not impossible, medical journeys.

Cases of schizophrenia have been documented for centuries all around the world. Schizophrenia is not caused by medication.


@Bbstschz – Yes, the effects of my son’s Invega injections would start wearing off about a week before he was due. We just started giving him the injection earlier rather than raise the dosage.

My son is no longer taking the injection, his decision :disappointed: and not doing nearly as well as he was.

Or perhaps he can get it one week earlier. That is what our PDoc did at least.

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