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Old 07-04-2005, 12:59 PM   #1
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Arrow My Neg. Effects Of Adderall...anyone Get These?

I was diagnosed with ADHD last fall and was started on 10mg of 6 hour dose Adderall. It seemed to work amazingly. My fidgeting decreased I Was able to hold a thought, focus, etc. Then I noticed the effects starting to not work as well. So then the doc increased my dose to 20mg of 6hr. Better...started to work again. Then my body got used to that so he thought it would be best to start me on 30 mg of adderall xr. WOW that was amazing...it worked wonders. All up until about a month ago, where I felt like my body started having adverse reactions. I started to feel too speedy, and started having heart palpitations and anxiety attacks, and shortage of breath(having trouble being able to take one of those satisfying deep breaths) so the doc lowered my dosage back to 10 mg of 6hr...to be taken-in 2 incriments as needed. My heart palpitations have decreased and my breathing is better not 100% but better...buuuutttt I still seem to get anxiety. HAs anyone else experienced these side effects?? and are they a result of long time usage of a stimulant or because my dosage was initially too high and it built up?? I've asked my doc but he has been vague in his explainations. Also can someone tell me the difference between adderall, concerta, and ritalin?? And why my doc iniially went straight for the adderall rather than the other meds?? IS one better than the other, would I have a better effect from another med rather than adderall? THank you soooooo much for the help. Hope everyone has a wonderful a nd SAFE 4th of July.

Last edited by KawaiiiGal; 07-04-2005 at 12:59 PM.

 
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Old 07-04-2005, 02:28 PM   #2
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Re: My Neg. Effects Of Adderall...anyone Get These?

Quote:
Originally Posted by KawaiiiGal
I was diagnosed with ADHD last fall and was started on 10mg of 6 hour dose Adderall. It seemed to work amazingly. My fidgeting decreased I Was able to hold a thought, focus, etc. Then I noticed the effects starting to not work as well. So then the doc increased my dose to 20mg of 6hr. Better...started to work again. Then my body got used to that so he thought it would be best to start me on 30 mg of adderall xr. WOW that was amazing...it worked wonders. All up until about a month ago, where I felt like my body started having adverse reactions. I started to feel too speedy, and started having heart palpitations and anxiety attacks, and shortage of breath(having trouble being able to take one of those satisfying deep breaths) so the doc lowered my dosage back to 10 mg of 6hr...to be taken-in 2 incriments as needed. My heart palpitations have decreased and my breathing is better not 100% but better...buuuutttt I still seem to get anxiety. HAs anyone else experienced these side effects?? and are they a result of long time usage of a stimulant or because my dosage was initially too high and it built up?? I've asked my doc but he has been vague in his explainations. Also can someone tell me the difference between adderall, concerta, and ritalin?? And why my doc iniially went straight for the adderall rather than the other meds?? IS one better than the other, would I have a better effect from another med rather than adderall? THank you soooooo much for the help. Hope everyone has a wonderful a nd SAFE 4th of July.

Hey Kawaiiigal. Let's see what I can reply to and what I can't. First off, I just started taking Adderall for ADD. It's amazing. I actually feel calm. I probably feel much like you did when you started. I was prescribed 10mg 2x a day. But I take it a little differently, and I'll tell ya about that later.

Quote:
HAs anyone else experienced these side effects?? and are they a result of long time usage of a stimulant or because my dosage was initially too high and it built up??
I'll tell ya what negative stuff I'm feeling so far. Aside from all the positive stuff, during the day when I'm taking adderall, I can get a little edgy, dry mouth, maybe little "flashes" of anxiety" that go away. Also, I'm one of thes OCD'ers who obsessively think about everything, the adderall almost takes that away, but I get "flashes" of those thoughts starting up. (I hope that makes sense, you may or may not be familliar with OCD) Byt eh end of the day, after I've taken all my daily dose, these negative effects can increase. So, you're problems may or may not have to with the "amount of time" you've been taking Adderall, but more about what your dose is, how you take it, and what your natural tolerance is.

ABout dosage: Like I said, I've been taking about 20 to 30 mg a day. BUt I'll take a 10 first. 2 hours later take a 5, another two hours take a 5. If I'm working late, I may take another 5. The point is, I'm trying to get a feel for myself. I can break those pills up any way I want. So for you, it may be how much you take at a time. Meaning, you may not need a 30 mg burst in the morning, and nothing else all day. Maybe, you need 5mgs every few hours, 5 in the morn ing, 10 at noon, and 5 in the afternoon.

As far as the rest of your questions, I don't really know I can say this, My doctor believes that the stimulants are the first line of defense against ADD. He's thinks that if your life can be improved with thsoe, go for it. If you have prblems, then try something else. Hey hoped I can help in some way, good luck.

 
Old 07-05-2005, 10:37 AM   #3
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Re: My Neg. Effects Of Adderall...anyone Get These?

Quote:
Originally Posted by KawaiiiGal
I was diagnosed with ADHD last fall and was started on 10mg of 6 hour dose Adderall. It seemed to work amazingly. My fidgeting decreased I Was able to hold a thought, focus, etc. Then I noticed the effects starting to not work as well. So then the doc increased my dose to 20mg of 6hr. Better...started to work again. Then my body got used to that so he thought it would be best to start me on 30 mg of adderall xr. WOW that was amazing...it worked wonders. All up until about a month ago, where I felt like my body started having adverse reactions. I started to feel too speedy, and started having heart palpitations and anxiety attacks, and shortage of breath(having trouble being able to take one of those satisfying deep breaths) so the doc lowered my dosage back to 10 mg of 6hr...to be taken-in 2 incriments as needed. My heart palpitations have decreased and my breathing is better not 100% but better...buuuutttt I still seem to get anxiety. HAs anyone else experienced these side effects?? and are they a result of long time usage of a stimulant or because my dosage was initially too high and it built up?? I've asked my doc but he has been vague in his explainations. Also can someone tell me the difference between adderall, concerta, and ritalin?? And why my doc iniially went straight for the adderall rather than the other meds?? IS one better than the other, would I have a better effect from another med rather than adderall? THank you soooooo much for the help. Hope everyone has a wonderful a nd SAFE 4th of July.
Well, from what I've read, your reactions are not unusual. The brain has an inner defense to maintain it's homostatis, so it does eventually build up tolerance(opposition) to most any psychoactive drug that takes over or controls brain function. This could take a short time or a long time, it varies by drug, dosage and personal chemistry/tolerance.

Tolerance can also bring on tolerance withdrawals while still on meds which is usually mistaken for worsening original condition or new emerging condition but it's the brain experiencing withdrawals because the dosage no longer has an effect plus the brain has built up opposing receptors to the drugs.

I heard a doctor mention on T.V. that side effects can be culmative, or appear years after taking the same drug...of course, escalating dosages increase the chances of side effects.

Anxiety can be a side effect of stimulants. In fact, I read that dopamine( the neuro that stimulants effect) is pre-cursor to adrenaline....adrenaline is the main culprit in anxiety.

 
Old 07-05-2005, 06:01 PM   #4
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Re: My Neg. Effects Of Adderall...anyone Get These?

Jennita, what a simple, clear explanation of the side effect & brain reaction! It made sense to me.

I always have side effects to everything; drugs never work the same for me as others. It's like my brain has its own anxiety attack when I take something that alters its chemistry.

KawaiiGal, I've had ADD, OCD, depression and anxiety all my life, with text-book examples of each. In addition to Adderall, I'm taking other medications, both to deal with my other problems, as well as to counteract the side effects. For instance, I'm taking Requip to tone down jitters and eliminate painful muscle spasms (which does concern me--that I am taking something to cover up a side effect to a drug I don't like having to take).
For *anxiety* I am taking small doses of risperdal, which, in larger doses, is used for schizophrenia. I am definitely less anxious now than I was before I took the Adderall, which I'm still taking, though in low doses.
I'm also taking Zoloft (for depression) and Trazadone at night, but not because its an anti-depressant, but to off-set the Adderall so I can sleep before 4:30am (not too happy with the idea of that anti-side effect either).
Sometimes I take a 5mg of Ritalin around 2pm, which helps me focus in the afternoon at work, but also makes it hard for me to go to sleep at night.

KawaiiiGal, Your description of symptoms and side effects are very similar to what I've heard/read elsewhere. I'm a little different than most, in that I'm still only taking 10mg of Adderall after about 6 months.

Last edited by seriousperson; 07-05-2005 at 06:02 PM.

 
Old 07-05-2005, 09:12 PM   #5
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Re: My Neg. Effects Of Adderall...anyone Get These?

I've gone from Aderall XR to Concerta to Straterra and back to Aderall non-XR and that's where I'm at now. Here's what I had for each.

Aderall XR - Started 20mg in the morning. I was jittery from the get go but could tell a difference in focus. It was supposed to last for about 9-12 hours so said (XR - eXtended Release). I got about 4 out of it. It was wonderful though until it started to wear and boy was I grumpy. Eventually the jitters went away and so did the focus. Up to 40 I went and the cycle started again. I continued this cycle for various doses and when the jitters, anxiety, emotions (I'm a guy, not used tho those ) got so bad we went for Concerta...

Concerta - Energy only. No focus, no grump. The energy lasted all day. If I could combine the positive effect of Aderall with the consistency of Concerta, I'd be homefree. Next, Straterra.

Straterra - Nothing... not one bluming thing. Back to Aderall but the non-XR version.

The Aderall "kickers" - I take a 30mg that lasts for about 2 - 4 hours and repeat as necessary. Went they wear off for the day, I become detached or ADD-worsened for a period of about 30-45 minutes. Not grumpy or anything. This is working fine. I take it up to 3 times a day. I am noticing the usual slump in focus, like it's not working. Today was like I didn't take it at all. Took a 40 at noon and still didn't notice anything. May have been a bad ADD day. I've seen these days where the meds don't touch it. Very few thankfully.

My expieriences in a nutshell.

 
Old 07-06-2005, 09:12 PM   #6
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Re: My Neg. Effects Of Adderall...anyone Get These?

tony, you may not notice it yourself, but that was a very focused post!

 
Old 07-07-2005, 11:58 AM   #7
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Re: My Neg. Effects Of Adderall...anyone Get These?

Quote:
Originally Posted by seriousperson
Jennita, what a simple, clear explanation of the side effect & brain reaction! It made sense to me.

I always have side effects to everything; drugs never work the same for me as others. It's like my brain has its own anxiety attack when I take something that alters its chemistry.

KawaiiGal, I've had ADD, OCD, depression and anxiety all my life, with text-book examples of each. In addition to Adderall, I'm taking other medications, both to deal with my other problems, as well as to counteract the side effects. For instance, I'm taking Requip to tone down jitters and eliminate painful muscle spasms (which does concern me--that I am taking something to cover up a side effect to a drug I don't like having to take).
For *anxiety* I am taking small doses of risperdal, which, in larger doses, is used for schizophrenia. I am definitely less anxious now than I was before I took the Adderall, which I'm still taking, though in low doses.
I'm also taking Zoloft (for depression) and Trazadone at night, but not because its an anti-depressant, but to off-set the Adderall so I can sleep before 4:30am (not too happy with the idea of that anti-side effect either).
Sometimes I take a 5mg of Ritalin around 2pm, which helps me focus in the afternoon at work, but also makes it hard for me to go to sleep at night.

KawaiiiGal, Your description of symptoms and side effects are very similar to what I've heard/read elsewhere. I'm a little different than most, in that I'm still only taking 10mg of Adderall after about 6 months.
Thanks for the compliment. It's a shame you have to take all those pills but at least you are sticking to low dosages. Basically though, the docs have you on uppers and downers. From what I've read, this is the stuff that can later on get you a bi-polar diagnosis, if you don't already have one. It's those high/low brain chemicals that are symptoms of that disease and almost everyone with it has had some history of drugs, either legal or illegal, or even alcohol and cigarettes since both effect brain chemistry too.

I do believe that perhaps a person can be born with bi-polar, but I doubt many really are as I'm very suspicious that chemicals themselves actually cause real chemical imbalances, whether it be by accident, prescription or abuse. So it's no surprise to me they find brain damage in such people in pet or MRI scans since chemicals are capable of doing this.

The brain scans of ADD kids is questionable since usually they have already taken ADD drugs..in other studies, sometimes the brain size differences or usage of glucose in the frontal lobes could be because of the non-ADD control kids being alot younger than the ADD kids in the studies, in other words, sometimes studies paid for by drug companies can be manipulated to produce positive results. As we've seen in recent accusations of hidden negative result clinical trials of AD's when a certain NY district attorney started investigating company records.

What I really don't like is that they cannot tell by any biological test for any one patient if their neurotransmitters are really that low/high or not and they have no standard measures to determine it. It's all based on "drug effects" and theory. They really can't prove any biological disease in these things, especially when most people diagnoised with a mental disorder pass all physicals and biological tests.

This is unlike diabetes, where there are diagnostic tests to determine blood sugar levels consistancy and also home kits for patients so they know when and how much insulin they do really need. IMHO, it's dangerous to play around guessing about brain chemicals since brain chemicals not only control emotions and impulses, sleep, etc. but also our hormone and nervous system functions.

Anyway, just be careful like you are being with your meds, if you can't stop taking them. Beware of tolerance and the need for higher dosage in the future because that's what may cause some problems for you later. Good luck.

Last edited by Jennita; 07-07-2005 at 12:04 PM.

 
Old 07-07-2005, 03:26 PM   #8
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Re: My Neg. Effects Of Adderall...anyone Get These?

I would think that people who abuse drugs are self medicating and that the cause of chemical imbalances isn't the actual abuse. The abuse only perpetuates a problem that is already there. Just my opinion.

 
Old 07-08-2005, 10:22 AM   #9
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Re: My Neg. Effects Of Adderall...anyone Get These?

Quote:
Originally Posted by StitchCarver
I would think that people who abuse drugs are self medicating and that the cause of chemical imbalances isn't the actual abuse. The abuse only perpetuates a problem that is already there. Just my opinion.
Yes, that's the theory of the medical community, like what came first, the chicken or the egg; really, we'll never know, but the medical community are bold enough to say they know it's absolutely the egg.....although they have no real proof of that.

You are entitled to your opinion. Here's mine...it isn't chemical imbalance that causes one to self-medicate. To me it seems most people with troubled lives. horrible lives, go looking for relief sometimes. Relief can come in a bottle, pill or needle. Sometimes it can happen just when someone is attempting to bond with others, to be part of something. Peer pressure, family pressure, life pressure....drugs just will take it all away.

Of course, then once a person is into it, the brain does crave it or needs it to feel normal or good since it starts to depend on the drug for that; at the same time, it tries to build tolerance by setting up opposing neurotransmitters... there's the real chemical imbalance.

Then there is the issue of "accidental addiction". Some pharmaceuticals can cause physical dependancy, tolerance and tolerance withdrawals. Those things can lead to higher need of the brain to have the drugs in order to function since the brain gets used to the chemical doing all the work so now it can't. Plus the brain still tries to build tolerance as self-defense, creating opposing neuros to combat the drug and maintain homostatis. But again, this is not normal and the balance of proper neuros is out of sorts as a result.

Anyway, "downregulation" of receptors is known to happen when the brain receptors are continually exposed to a drug. Downregulation is a desensitizing of receptors or a sort of dying off of them. This would seem to be a form of functional brain damage.

So drugs themselves, for whatever reason one is on them or starts them, can cause changes in the brain. Other psychoactive substances are also culprits such as alcohol and cigarettes.

Chicken or the egg? I don't claim to really, absolutely know but it does seem that most mentally ill people, I'm talking the truly ill ones...not ones with shyness or PMS....have a history of drugs/chemicals in one form or another so with that consistancy I would be highly suspect of the drugs since drugs do, in time, show considerable ability to damage normal brain functions.

I've read that, with drug-free time, the brain can recover from downregulation. But it could take months/years for complete recovery in some people and that's where sometimes people just cannot do it or are mistakenly told they'll never be able to do without some sort of drug so that fear keeps them on something.

But of course, I'm not saying every single case of mental illness is created ONLY by drugs or alcohol....that would be like saying there is only one cause of cancer.

But, drugs seem to be in the top catagory of suspects.

Last edited by Jennita; 07-08-2005 at 10:58 AM.

 
Old 07-08-2005, 01:34 PM   #10
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Re: My Neg. Effects Of Adderall...anyone Get These?

It doesn't make sense to me. If what you're sayiung is true, then all mental illness is caused purely by your enviroment. It would also state, that all medications for mental illnesses actually cause chemical imbalances. And because many medications actually work for people, like SSRI's and Stimulants for example, and because according to your theory, they cause chemical imbalances, then to help many mental illnesses meanss giving someone a chemical imbalance?

 
Old 07-08-2005, 02:12 PM   #11
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Re: My Neg. Effects Of Adderall...anyone Get These?

Jennita, I have to STRONGLY disagree with your statements that mental illnesses are primarily caused by drugs!!!

And you doubt that "many people really are born with bipolar disorder" and other mental illnesses?

You have got to be kidding!
You are on a board for people with a disorder that, by definition, must have been present before age 7 and you are telling us that mental illness is caused by DRUGS? This just doesn't seem logical to me!

Interesting that you're telling *us* your theories on bipolar disorder and not those on the bipolar board. Why don't you share your theory with them? I'm sure they'd love it!

As an individual who has suffered from regular episodes of major depression since I was 10 (TEN!), let me assure you that I had not taken any drugs prior to that age. Let me also assure you that my parents HAD NOT taken any drugs before or while pregnant with me!

My severely ADHD son was noticeably different from others beginning at the age of about 6 months. And no, I had NOT given him drugs in his infancy nor taken any myself before he was born. I apologize for being so defensive but I resent the implication that I had.

Bipolar disorder runs in my family. ADHD runs in both my family and in my husbands. But you want me to forget genetics (except in some cases) and see drugs as the primary suspect?!? A convenient theory for you to espouse when you suffer from neither.

Once again, we will have to agree to disagree on this one... At least you have clearly called your thinking "theory" and haven't tried to pass it off as fact!

 
Old 07-08-2005, 06:39 PM   #12
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Re: My Neg. Effects Of Adderall...anyone Get These?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Jennita
...I've read that, with drug-free time, the brain can recover from downregulation. But it could take months/years for complete recovery...
Oh, that it were so in my case!
After 20 years without any self-medicating or prescription medication, and 6 months of therapy with no drugs, my choice seemed to be either to lose my job or try medication.

It seems sometimes one is the chicken and sometimes that same one is the egg.
Jennita, I believe you agree with this, but feel not enough people are willing to consider the alternate view when medication isn't working.
Let's just hope that those whose lives will be made better by medication will try it, even if they are the few.
I don't see any of my meds being a cure, except maybe the Risperdal for anxiety, which in higher doses is used for Schizophrenia, which kind of freaks me out. But it does at least prevent my insides from feeling bathed in hormones of distress everytime I obsessively think of something that is not as it should be.

Jennita, I appreciate the concern you feel for others with such a passion.

 
Old 07-09-2005, 12:45 AM   #13
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Re: My Neg. Effects Of Adderall...anyone Get These?

Wowee, folks,well, lets' just say that chemical imbalance is in fact a theory that is still unable to be proven in anyone's case(don't take my word, ask any professional if he can measure your brain chemicals) and nobody seemed to notice I did say that drugs were "suspect" in many cases, NOT the ONLY cause of mental disorders and that the definition of mental disorder these days include nailbiters, shy people and PMS so even the mental disorders are questionable.

Even ADD has been "cured" by outside methods that do not include medication. If ADD was truly a chemical imbalance, there would be no way anything would work but medication, true? My nephew doesn't have ADHD anymore and he isn't on medication.

I've even heard of bi-polars becoming better with alternate methods which do not include drugs.

If there was only one reason such as chemical imbalance then nothing at all would work except medications. If medications work so well like insulin to diabetics, then why do alot of patients end up getting worse down the line or have problems with the medications?

True, there are many bi-polars and schizophrenics that appear to be born with it but still it is unclear if life factors such as mothers' diet, medications, etc. effect developing brains or medications in childhood, malnutrition, etc. might effect brain development or if the conditions are actually spiritual, emotionally, and behavioral based instead of brain function.

I was mearly expressing my opinion, which I got mostly from other professionals I might add; I didn't just dream this stuff up.

Also, bi-polars, schizophrenics have some level of lack of reality, hal******ations, and abnormal thoughts. Most people on drugs from big pharma do not have these symptoms yet are put into the same catagories and stigmas.

Sorry if I offended anyone....I never meant to imply anyone was a junkie here, ok?? But, drugs will change brain functions, cause downregulation of receptors, cause dependancy, addictions, tolerance and withdrawals. This includes the NON-ABUSIVE, legal drug ingestion. This is already proven scientifically for quite awhile now.

I should know...I became an accidental "addict"(no compulsions or behaviors, just physical dependancy which was absolutely horrible) with benzodiazepines, went through a hell I can't describe despite the fact I was a tee-totler all my life. The reason I was prescribed benzos was because of the denial within the medical community that my symptoms were simply a reaction to codiene given to me for a cold and I didn't have a clue at the time so I believed them and took the benzos for my symptoms.

Never once took more than prescribed to me by my doctor!!! After almost going insane while still on them (no joke) got off them myself and went through protracted benzo withdrawal. After 5 years, sleep is still screwy but I am over the worst. However, before pharmaceuticals, I was just fine and those drugs have caused me so much grief I will not forget so easily.

I am still very angry at the hell I had to endure. I always followed doctors' orders and they screwed me up good. I just hate to think where I'd be now if I continued with their "theraputic" medications....I'm guessing the mental ward.

I do have my own experience, the experience of others and lots of medical professionals who have the same opinions (alot are based on real science I might add if anyone cares) on "chemical imbalances" that I expressed.

So I guess we are on two different sides of the fence.....agree to disagree I suppose is all I can say and with that I will leave you all to your own discussions on your side effects thread here..... since I am not having any side effects, I guess no need for me to continue the thread.

Good luck everyone.

 
Old 07-09-2005, 08:34 PM   #14
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Re: My Neg. Effects Of Adderall...anyone Get These?

My only comment to you is: ADD and /or ADHD does NOT go away. It is only managed! I know from personal experience. I was diagnosed with ADD almost 20 years ago. I spent alot of time in a class room with professionals teaching me to "overcome" my learning disability. For many, many years my ADD had been controled (w/o drugs I might add) yet I would still have a reoccurance everyonce in awhile (when stress level was high) In the past year, my problem has gotten severly unlivable. I am seriously considering medication for the first time EVER. I am against drugs totally (for my own personal use that is...) So my ADD did not just "go away" it was controlled by using tools I learned from teachers. Controlled. Thats like saying a person who used to stutter, doesn't anymore so they must be cured. They are not cured. They have learned tools on how to manage their stuttering. Learning disabilities are very real to those who have them.Its not something we enjoy in the least.I'm sure if their was a "cure" we would all jump on it like a dog on a bone. Another thing,If someone is "cured" they don't need to take medications for their ailment for the rest of their lives.Right? People take cocktails of medication to manage their HIV or AIDS...Not cured.
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