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  • Straterra vs Stimulants

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    Old 02-22-2003, 02:27 PM   #1
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    Red face Straterra vs Stimulants

    I am new to this board and have been reading over several of the new posts. I have a close family member that has ADHD and has been on a stimulant for quite some time. I also have several prominent psychiatrists I call my friends. BOTTOM LINE, straterra is a failed anti-depressant! With ADHD, both dopamine and norepinephrine are lacking. Dopamine is considered more prominent in ADHD, but norepinephrine is associated with impulsivity and hyperactivity. Both amphetamines and methylphenidates hit dopamine strong, the amphetamines also have a strong effect on norepinephrine. Strattera only has a strong effect on norepinephrine. Strattera is the new kid on the block and unfortunately it will run its course on several children whose parents are looking for a miracle drug. Will you continue seeing fatigue, YES, will you have many of the same and in some cases more side effects with Straterra, YES! Strattera may in the future have a place in the ADHD community, but it will never take the place of Adderall XR and Concerta.
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    Old 02-22-2003, 03:15 PM   #2
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    Of course not, I can tell that strattera doesn't effect dopamine levels at all and even knew before it was on the market that it will be used or has been used for depression; however, if current research is correct, it will help with the recticular activating system malfunction/problem.

    Like I and many others have said we can tell something is missing with strattera cognitive wise. However I feel the combo of strattera and a small dose of a stimulant will be a much greater arsenal against AD/HD than just the plain stimulants.

     
    Old 02-22-2003, 03:34 PM   #3
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    Exactly, that is my point. We have parents who are taking their children off stimulants because they think that strattera is going to be better! Strattera has about 9 weeks of research behind it.
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    Old 02-22-2003, 03:45 PM   #4
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    Strattera has about 9 weeks behind it in it's ability to accurately help AD/HD symptoms but not 9 weeks of saftey.

    Strattera (end result wise) is essentially a stronger form of wellbutrin. Wellbutrin increases norepinephrine while strattera 'holds' norepinephrine in the synapse. However, strattera doesn't effect dopamine levels, but wellbutrin does at the higher doses.
    I can tell that if I wasn't taking wellbutrin along with strattera, strattera would even be less effective.

    One thing I have noticed in favor of strattera is how it increases the length of action in stimulants. Meaning I already tried an Adderall XR with it and it worked great and much longer than without the strattera, probably due to it's reuptake action.

    Strattera also doesn't negatively effect apetite either, which was one problem I and many others had with stimulants.

    If strattera can cause the stimulants to last longer at smaller doses then I'm very much in favor of it.

     
    Old 02-22-2003, 03:49 PM   #5
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    "YES, will you have many of the same and in some cases more side effects with Straterra, YES!"

    Could you elaborate on the more side effects with strattera. Are you referring to side effects with meds that have chemical properties as reuptake inhibitors ?

     
    Old 02-22-2003, 04:03 PM   #6
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    Let me clarify that statement. Side effects do not differ much between stimulant meds and Strattera. You do however have the sexual dysfunction question with Strattera. To clarify my statement earlier, the only benefit I have noticed with Strattera is more convenience for parents and physicians (less prescriptions)! In my opinion, a childs well being is more important than saving 10 minutes of my day picking up a new prescription once per month. Bottom line, this medication has not been proven safe. If adults understand the risk and still want to be a guinea pig (fine), but I hate to see children put in this situation.
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    Old 02-22-2003, 06:58 PM   #7
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    This has to be some of the most interesting info I have read. You hit the nail on the head. We just took our son off Strattera after a month trial. It did nothing for the hyperactivity. He was, and is again taking 2 18mg Concerta's a day. While we were doing the Strattera trial, we still had to give him 1 18mg Concerta for he couldn't sit still to save his life. I did notice that it made the 1 Concerta last all day, whereas without it he has to take 2 a day. He metabolizes them very quickly, and is also Bipolar so the 36mg dose is to much and makes him manic. That is why he take 2 18mg pills. The last day he was on Strattera we had to take him to the ER for chest pains, and he hasn't had them since he's been off of it. The only thing they found was that his heartbeat was on the high end, but not high enough to worry about. I also noticed the mood swings were getting worse the longer he was on it. The anti-depressant properties we causing havoc on his Bipolar. He became so goofy and giddy, laughing at nothing, crowing like a rooster, and combined with the lack of control over his hyperness we had to remove it. The house is peaceful once again with the Concerta. Methylphendidate has been tested for over 30 years and Strattera has hardly any background. That worried me. I'd take having to get a written script, going out of my way to take that 2nd pill, over what MAY happen with long term use of Strattera.

     
    Old 02-22-2003, 07:56 PM   #8
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    An increased heart rate is a MAJOR SIDE EFFECT of Strattera's! You mention that your child metabolizes very quickly. Your DR would no better than I, but with Concerta being a med that utilizes the OROS delivery system (basically a release system that depends heavily on GI transit time)this could be a concern for you. Is Concerta effective? You may want to look into Adderall XR or Ritalyn LA if you are seeing a rapid metabolism time with your child... Just a thought??
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    Old 02-22-2003, 08:33 PM   #9
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    Adderal was the first med we ever tried. He did well for a short time, and then it stopped working. He became manic with each increase so that is when we switched to regular Ritalin. He did quite well except we noticed the peaks and valleys in the med. between dosings. Concerta then came out and he has been on it since. Even though they claim it to work for 12 hours we really only get about 8. We did try Metadate for about a week. Same results except that wore off even faster. The evenings were really a struggle so we went to 2 Concertas a day. Ever since we did this, things have been great. No problems getting to bed since the med wears off just at bedtime and he is actually tired instead of getting that hyper wound up feeling he was getting with the 1. He is 7 years old and his heart rate was 128bpm. The doctor told me it was on the high end for a child, but not high enough to worry. When it gets around 200 then we should be alarmed. We haven't tried anything else since. I am actually waiting for the methy patch to come out. From the trials, they have found it to be a very even release, no meds to take, and it should wear off about 2 hours after the patch is removed. Since off the Stattera he hasn't had any more pain.

     
    Old 02-23-2003, 06:35 PM   #10
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    It's so interesting that people are so rigid in their thinking about medication. The first thing you have to remember is that everyone is unique, and as such individuals react differently to the same medications.

    Some adults and children react beautifully to Adderall; others, like me, have horrific side effects which effectively negate any of the positives the drug has to offer.

    For me, Strattera is a breeze. So far, none of the side effects that are *possible* (not a sure thing), have occurred, aside from a mild sleepiness the first couple of days.

    The only way to actually know how you or your child will react to a medication is to actually take it. A lot of parents are very unhappy with the meds like Adderall for various reasons - side effects, et al.

    In my experience, there might be one generality that works better than others (but no generality is very good, I'm afraid). People with the hyperactivity part of the disorder seem to do well on the amphetamine/stimulant-type drugs, while those without hyperactivity seem to dovetail better with the antidepressants like Wellbutrin or Strattera (I don't think it really qualifies as a "failed anti-depressant" - but there are a lot of terrifically effective drugs out there that were developed for one reason but proved to be more effective for something else entirely, just as penicillin started out as orange mold).

    I'm just glad there are choices. Don't try to get people *not* to choose alternatives - your opinion on this is only going to be as good as your own experience. And if someone does try Strattera and doesn't like the effects, that person can try something else or return to the medication they were taking prior to that. There are some particularly desperate people out there who need something other than the stimulants, myself among them. We are more than happy to try out Strattera.

     
    Old 02-23-2003, 07:56 PM   #11
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    I'm with you EllayGuy. After hving resisted meds for so long (tried all alternatives) and failed with stimulants, it is hard to just sign off from life. Padded cell? Can't pass school, so become permanently disabled as a child? So many incredible things were never intended to be created, and only an open mind can appreciated their true value. Straterra is a wondeful alternative to bleak bleak bleak.

     
    Old 02-26-2003, 02:09 PM   #12
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    I can't believe how horrible I have felt since being put on strattera. I called Eli Lilly Monday to tell them how awful I think that medicine is. I am very frightened and went to the hospital Monday night. The doctors wouldn't keep me because they said I was detoxing from 10 years of prescribed stimulant useage and that I should go home and bear it and just stop takng the strattera. I have behaved in a manner no one who knows me can even believe. I have acted psychotic. I do not want to scare people but for me, this strattera made me very sick to my stomach and unable to think two consecutive thoughts. I am trying a new doctor tomorrow and I pray from myself and family I will be given the help I need. I wonder if anyone else has seen any reactions like those I've experienced. Thanks.

     
    Old 02-26-2003, 02:51 PM   #13
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    Kap, why is it you've called Lilly and gone to the ER when your first phone call should have been to your doctor? Your doctor could tell you that coming down from years of stimulant use (possibly very high dosages) can result in withdrawal and massive health issues. Why is your doctor not involved?

    Further, it takes around three weeks to really get the positive effects of Strattera, since it's cumulative. How long have you been taking it?

    This sounds strange ... You need to talk to your doctor, not perfect strangers.

     
    Old 02-27-2003, 02:23 PM   #14
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    I agree I think you should have talked to your doc first. I think Strattera is great and I wish it had been out a long time ago. I cannnot deal with stimulants becuase it gives me anxiety. I started off on 40 mg and up it to 80 mg in 4 days. I felt a little weird the first day or 2 but once I got used to it no problems.

     
    Old 02-27-2003, 02:44 PM   #15
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    From what I have learned about strat, I can tell you there is very little chance that it was the strat that did this to you. Shame on your doctor for not warning you what you were in for, and shame on that emergency room! Doctors! Can't live with 'em, can't get meds without 'em! They rarely fail to disappoint me.

     
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