Posted by jodie on February 8, 2003, at 18:39:48
In reply to Straterra vs. Adderall XR ???, posted by JustDewIt on February 7, 2003, at 13:32:04
My son just turned 8, he was diagnosed with ADHD a little over 3 years ago, and has also been taking medication ever since.
My son started out on Dexedrine, it seemed to work for just a little while, but became very moody, sensitive, and started getting aggressive. I have heard others say the same.
My son then went to Adderall, first he was on the regular, where he took it a couple of times a day, it seemed to be too much, and had major insomnia. We tried just giving it to him once a day, but the evenings were a nightmare. So we tried the XR instead, it seemed to work for a little while, he started losing a LOT of weight, not wanting to eat. We actually had to go out and buy him smaller pants, and boxers. He started getting moody, overly sensitive (cried a lot) and aggressive, it was impossible to get him to sleep at night. We finally took him off of that. Of course he has tried several different anti-deppresants, including Prozac, & Lexapro. Now he is on Wellbutin and Ritalin.
With the Ritalin, we give him a larger dose in the morning, and two smaller doses throughout the day. His second dose is at noon, then the last at 4 pm. Of course, he has to take a dose of it at school, thats a drag, but its worth it, he has asthma also, so he has to take his inhaler and use it at school anyway. He's been on this for a couple of months. His appetite has returned, he is actually gaining weight, he is starting to grow upward too (not saying the other meds were causing this, but they all can cause slowered growth). He is so much more calm. His grades are improving significantly. The teacher was getting extremely fed up with him before the ritalin. She said she was spending much of the day just trying to keep our son calm and listen. She wasn't rude about it, just didn't know what to do. She seems to really like my son, and he likes her. We (me and my ex husband & his wife) love the Ritalin. I was so hesitant to try it, because I always heard horror stories about it. But after reading a book by Dr. Amen (a psychiatrist who specializes in ADD/ADHD, and has a facility in California just for ADD/HD) we decided to give Ritalin a try. By the way, if you haven't already, you should check into Dr. Amen, he has a web site and some great books. Anyway... our son still has problems getting to sleep (he would stay up all night if you let him), but the Dr. has him on Clonidine (I think that is spelled right). He takes that about an hour before bedtime, and it WORKS!!! He sleeps well, all night.
We never tried Concerta, the Dr. never suggested it. I have thought about Strattera. I like the idea of being able to control his ADHD without a stimulant, its's not a controlled substance, so we would be able to get refills instead of going to the Dr. avery month to get a new prescription. But right now things are working out so well, that I almost hate even trying something else. Yes he has his good and bad days, but don't we all..lol. Everyone is different though, Ritalin may not work for your son.
I had mentioned that he is on Wellbutrin (for depression), he started that about the same time as the Ritalin. Since Wellbutrin has mild stimulating effects, maybe it and the Ritalin are working together just perfect. I am so happy to see him actually want to eat lunch, and dinner and sometimes want seconds.
We have found that sugar really affects him in a horrible way. If he has candy, or drinks with sugar, he gets this sugar high. It is horrible, he bounces off the walls. So we give him sugar free things most of the time, but he is a kid and loves to have treats once in a while :-). We don't let him have caffeine either (well..rarely).
I myself was recently diagnosed with ADD, my previous diagnosis was Bipolar. I still believe I have both. Anyway I take Lexapro, which seems to work. I was on Strattera for almost two weeks, didn't really notice that much difference, but I could sit down and focus on one thing at a time a little better. I suddenly broke out in this awful rash, I had to go to the ER. They told me it was a delayed allergic reaction to the Strattera. I had to stop taking it. Oh, and I did lose my appetite when taking it.
My pdoc is now having me try Adderall. I asked her about Ritalin instead. She said she hasn't had much success with adults on Ritalin, but she thinks Adderall has worked well for adults, and vice versa. She said she rarely puts a child on Adderall. Sorry this post has become so long, but I understand your situation completely. I have also been doing some research on Strattera in children. It seems to work better for adults, and for children who have very mild ADHD (just what I've read, and have heard from some others, including pdocs) Just thought you may talk to your sons Dr. about Ritalin and possibly Wellbutrin.
I took my first dose of Adderall XR this morning....whoa, I don't know how kids can tolerate this stuff. I have had lots of motivation and concentration, but I feel like I'm on cocaine or something, I'm speeding. My pdoc said I would feel like this until my body gets used to it. Actually I feel really good, almost too good. Don't know if I'm going to get to sleep tonight! My appointment for my pdoc was originally on the 17th, but they called yesterday to reschedule. They got me right in.
Anyway enough about me, your son is the focus here.
Hope I helped a little. I hope the Strattera does work, that would be wonderful. If it doesn't :-( ...maybe you could give Ritalin a try.
Once again sorry this post is soooo long, I told you I felt like I'm taking speed :-) I could type forever and not get bored!!!
Lots of luck, please keep me posted , I'm interested to hear how the Strattera works on your son. My son may one day have to give it a try.