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Old 02-14-2011, 08:38 AM   #1
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Unhappy Adderall is hell for him any other suggestions? Vyvance?

This is for my boyfriend who has been on ADHD medication since he was about 5. So far he has only tried two different medications Ritalin, and Adderall. He was put on Ritalin first, and he stayed on it for about 2 years before being switched to Adderall due to side effects. With the Ritalin all he really did was sit there spaced out and stare at things, he also absolutely hated how it made him feel. Currently he is on a 40mg dosage of generic Adderall that he takes when he has work. Its probably worth noting that he is 19, 5'11, and 198lbs. As I said he only takes the adderall to focus at work because he hates what it does to him.
His adderall symptoms are:
- feeling jittery
- constantly snapping his neck (this like a "tic" it hurts him a lot to do it but if he doesn't he feel an increased urge to do so until it drives him nuts and he does it)
- never feeling hungry
- inability to sleep
- irrational moodiness/irritability (sometimes, when it happens he doesn't understand why he feels this way)
- uncontrollable anxiousness and urge to do something productive (when this feeling kicks in he will frequently start to do something but then stop midway due to frustration and dissatisfaction, and then switch to doing something else)
- the inability to have an erection (this is an occasional thing, sometimes it appears to be caused by not eating so he can eat and it will be fine in say 30 minutes, and other times it is just impossible no matter what he does despite the fact that he really wants to have sex)

That is about all I can think of at the moment, I may post others if we think of them. He really dislikes taking Adderall but it is his only option when he goes to work since he is a security guard and has to stand in place. However, recently he heard from a coworker that her son had the exact same symptoms on Adderall but they subsided when he switched to Vyvance. Has anyone else had any luck with these types of symptoms subsiding on Vyvance or any other type of medication?

Last edited by katxed; 02-14-2011 at 08:44 AM.

 
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Old 02-14-2011, 09:32 AM   #2
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Re: Adderall is hell for him any other suggestions? Vyvance?

Hi I would see if he could get off Adderall the annoying tic may last the rest of life if it is not stopped immediatly and might anyway. I would be interested to know. I would not use the Vyvanse it has symptoms just as bad. A person could look at the National Institute of health information to check on the symptoms these drugs cause.

Some people may have gotten relief from symptoms by avoiding sugar, meats dairys, eating fruits,sunflower seeds, increase unrefined whole grains cereals and breads without additives, wheat germ, vegetables black beans,green peas, spelt, green split peas, navy beans, corn, lentils pinto beans, lima beans, kidney beans, sesame seeds, whole grain oats, asparagus, spinach, brussel sprouts and squash, nuts(vitamin B1 foods) and avoiding all additives in food. In my opinion slso helpful may be no coffee, tea, tobacco, alcohol, drugs, doing health measures including eating a good breakfast a medium lunch and a light supper and a daily walk in sun and fresh air. Proper rest at night at the same time may be useful. Have a nice day!

Last edited by sjb; 02-14-2011 at 09:45 AM. Reason: important addition made

 
Old 02-14-2011, 10:13 AM   #3
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Re: Adderall is hell for him any other suggestions? Vyvance?

He's tried so hard to not have to take any meds but he can't handle going to work without them since it requires him to stand in place all day so no meds is not an option at this point. As far as the tics go we aren't worried about them being permanent, he doesn't do it at all when he is off his meds. However he does get neck pains because he does it so much when he is on the meds so I am kind of worried about that, whatever he is doing is definitely not good for his neck. I wish there was an easy fix for this . I guess at this point we are just looking for a better type of medication.

 
Old 02-14-2011, 10:34 AM   #4
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Re: Adderall is hell for him any other suggestions? Vyvance?

The first thing I'd suggest is a lower dose. The agitation, sleeplessness, it really sounds like he's taking more than necessary. The "right" dose shouldn't feel like much, it should just let him be more productive.

Second, do try some lifestyle interventions.

Third, consider non-stimulant medications (Strattera, Intuitiv, etc)

 
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Old 02-14-2011, 10:44 AM   #5
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Re: Adderall is hell for him any other suggestions? Vyvance?

Hi umm well everyone makes their own choices. I will say I know at least 4 people with permanent tics and they will have them the rest of their life. Some of them may have another 50 years to go with one unless a cure is found.

 
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Old 02-14-2011, 11:04 AM   #6
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Re: Adderall is hell for him any other suggestions? Vyvance?

Quote:
Originally Posted by janewhite1 View Post
The first thing I'd suggest is a lower dose. The agitation, sleeplessness, it really sounds like he's taking more than necessary. The "right" dose shouldn't feel like much, it should just let him be more productive.

Second, do try some lifestyle interventions.

Third, consider non-stimulant medications (Strattera, Intuitiv, etc)
He has "experimented" with taking half his dose and while it does help alleviate the symptoms he says the effect if gives him is very comparable to when a full dose starts to wear off. So maybe he needs 30mg? His pills are 20mg each so maybe we should see about getting 10 mg pills. Also thank you for the idea of non-stimulant medications. He has basically been told that its Adderall or Ritalin and side effects are just something you have to deal with so its nice to see other options available in case Adderall doesn't work out. Do you know how effective the non-stimulant medications are? How is the safety and side effects compared to stimulant drugs?

@sjb that is a scary thought. Were they induced by similar medications?

 
Old 02-14-2011, 11:30 AM   #7
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Re: Adderall is hell for him any other suggestions? Vyvance?

Hi it's possible....anyone who investigates the drugs at the NIH site can see it listed as a side effect for themselves.

 
Old 02-15-2011, 12:22 PM   #8
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Re: Adderall is hell for him any other suggestions? Vyvance?

My son does so much better on short acting rather than long acting. He takes focolan 2 times a day and he has a much smoother transition in the evening, eats and sleeps well. My son did not do well on ANY long acting drugs. He feels so much better on them he doesn't even mind having to stop what he is doing at lunch time to his afternoon med.

 
Old 02-15-2011, 07:29 PM   #9
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Re: Adderall is hell for him any other suggestions? Vyvance?

katxed,

A few more combinations/possibilities to consider:

1. How well can your bf function without meds of any type?

2. Have you explored diet and exercise regimens?

3. Do some research on clonidine and guanfacine. Both meds are powerful α2 adrenergic agonists. Guanfacine belongs to the α-2a subtype.

It is important that you understand the difference in how the two meds work.

Clonidine disrupts working memory. Clonidine is prescribed to counteract the side-effects, including tics, of Adderall and other stimulants.

Guanfacine enhances working memory. It is prescribed as an alternate to stimulants to treat the symptoms of ADHD or as an adjunct to stimulants to manage ADHD rebound and its associated insomnia. While guanfacine has little usefulness in controlling tics directly, the addition of guanfacine can indirectly help as the dose of Adderall can be lowered without loss of efficacy. In fact, a reduction in the dose of Adderall can help efficacy per JaneWhite's earlier post.

Finally, yes Vyvanse may prove to be more helpful. The left-handed amphetamine molecule that is about 25% active in Adderall, is largely responsible for most of Adderall's more nasty side-effects. Do some research on Vyvanse as well. Vyvanse active ingredient is 100% dextro (right handed) amphetamine.

Do not rely on any opinion expressed on this board including mine without finding and understanding supportive evidenced based medical information. No support? Dump it as worthless.

Want the "poop" on Adderall's "tic" side-effect? ***** lists "uncontrolled movements," under "unlikely side-effects."

See for yourself: http://www.*****.com/drugs/drug-63163-adderall+oral.aspx?drugid=63163&drugname =adderall+oral

Your bf is experiencing one of Adderall's "unlikely" side-effects. How can you two manage the "tic" and the other problems Adderall is apparently causing?

Do your research. And, IMHO, find another doctor. A "doctor" that can offer no more than a MPH or amphetamine choice, is NOT the doctor I'd want. I'd fire the bozo on the spot.

Bob

Last edited by addprogrammer; 02-15-2011 at 07:31 PM. Reason: Word fix

 
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Old 02-16-2011, 08:36 AM   #10
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Re: Adderall is hell for him any other suggestions? Vyvance?

Quote:
Originally Posted by addprogrammer View Post

1. How well can your bf function without meds of any type?
He can function alright without meds, but it is really hard for him to focus on things that he doesn't care for like school work. Also it makes it hard for him to sit still without some kind of stimulation. I would absolutely love to be experiment with giving him "fidget tools" and seeing what he would be able to do then but its not really possible with his job. Hes not allowed to have his hands in his pockets at work and since he works at a casino we wouldn't able able to do anything like that. At home no treatment is necessary, he can sit at his computer for hours, work on his fourwheeler, etc. Really the only other difference when he is off his meds is that he isn't always appropriate. Its nothing extreme it just that he can be kind of impulsive and that leads him to do and say things that he wouldn't normally do. I wish his parents and doctor had been more experimental with meds and alternative treatments. To me it seems like the standard adderall prescription made everything tolerable for them so they just left it at that.

I also have kind of a theory/question about his eating habits. The days that he takes his meds he might eat half a sandwich for the day (this is about 3 days a week). However the days he is not on his pills hes eats, and eats, and eats. For example lets say we ordered pizza and wings for dinner. Out of a large 16" pizza he would eat at least half, plus wings all in one sitting. If I made him sandwiches lets say ham he would need 8 of them to satisfy his hunger. This kind of thing is how it goes for every meal. Is this because of the adderall? It is starving his body of nutrients? I really think it might be, I have never seen someone eat the way he does on a regular basis. And for the record he is not even close to fat, nobody ever believes that he really weighs 198lbs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by addprogrammer View Post

Do your research. And, IMHO, find another doctor. A "doctor" that can offer no more than a MPH or amphetamine choice, is NOT the doctor I'd want. I'd fire the bozo on the spot.
He rarely goes to the doctor for anything, not that I blame him. A long time ago his doctors complex was bought out by a big healthcare company in his area and turned into a VA Clinic with a lot of new doctors. Despite that they encouraged all of their current patients to stay which his family did. So for years now hes been seeing doctors that specialize in the elderly, not children with ADHD which I think can explain a lot. Anyway we are looking into a local psychiatrist that has done a lot of work with ADHD, ADD, and Autism . My best friends family has been going to him for a while for their daughter with autism and they have said nothing but good things about him so we are hopeful.

 
Old 02-16-2011, 08:51 AM   #11
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Re: Adderall is hell for him any other suggestions? Vyvance?

Hi that is a lot of food, how tall is he?
Ham and other meats may contain nitrites and additives not good for brain health. Meat in the past at least has been known to cause aggression in people. This is partly due to the fact likely that before slaughter animals are banded together and poked and prodded in ways that may cause fear and anger and the adrenalin is then released into the animals flesh before being prepared for market.

 
Old 02-16-2011, 09:06 AM   #12
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Re: Adderall is hell for him any other suggestions? Vyvance?

I hope the new psychiatrist does have some better ideas!

Adderall suppresses appetite, that's why he needs to cram down so much food when he's off the drug. Still, skipping meals can cause drops in blood sugar, which is bad for ADHD. On the days when he has to take it, he should at least try to eat a good breakfast before the drug take effect. Aim for one with protein and fiber rather than too much sugar.

 
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Old 02-16-2011, 09:13 AM   #13
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Re: Adderall is hell for him any other suggestions? Vyvance?

Hi if too much meat is eaten of course he would not feel hungry. I would wait until being hungry to eat or eat at the end of 5 hours from the last meal whichever comes first. Also protein is converted to glucose in a process called glucogenesis (glucose is a form of sugar) and too much fat, protein or sugar does not benefit health. I hope this helps someone. Have a nice day!

 
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Old 02-16-2011, 09:15 AM   #14
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Re: Adderall is hell for him any other suggestions? Vyvance?

Hes 5'11. He does eat a lot of stuff other than meat and junk food, but no matter what kind of food he eats it is always in that quantity. Some of his favorite regularly eaten foods are cucumbers, rice/corn chex cereal, bean and cheese burritos, yogurt, eggs, and triscuits. Personally I am not a big meat eater at all, so a lot of what we eat is vegetarian but he loves lunch meat so we do frequently get that.

 
Old 02-16-2011, 09:20 AM   #15
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Re: Adderall is hell for him any other suggestions? Vyvance?

Quote:
Originally Posted by janewhite1 View Post
On the days when he has to take it, he should at least try to eat a good breakfast before the drug take effect. Aim for one with protein and fiber rather than too much sugar.
He says that if he eats before he takes his pills it cancels them out so he generally doesn't eat anything unless its small and at the end of the day. He has also tried eating while on them but he finds it nearly impossible unless they are nearly over anyway.

 
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