Dextroamphetamines: Uses, Side Effects, Addiction
Dextroamphetamine is a central nervous system stimulant, It works by changing the amounts of certain natural substances in the brain. Dextroamphetamine is used as part of a treatment program to control symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD; more difficulty focusing, controlling actions, and remaining still or quiet than other people who are the same age) in adults and children.
Dextroamphetamine is also used to treat narcolepsy (a sleep disorder that causes excessive daytime sleepiness and sudden attacks of sleep). Furthermore it is used as an athletic performance and cognitive enhancer and recreationally as an aphrodisiac and euphoriant.
How should dextroamphetamine be used?
Dextroamphetamine comes as a liquid, tablet, and an extended-release (long-acting) capsule to take by mouth. The tablet is usually taken 2 to 3 times daily with or without food. The extended-release capsule is usually taken once a day with or without food. The liquid is usually taken once or twice daily with or without food. Take dextroamphetamine at around the same time(s) every day. If you are taking dextroamphetamine tablets, take your first dose as soon as you wake up in the morning, and space your doses by 4 to 6 hours. Do not take dextroamphetamine in the evening because it may cause difficulty falling asleep or staying asleep. Follow the directions on your prescription label carefully, and ask your doctor or pharmacist to explain any part you do not understand. Take dextroamphetamine exactly as directed.
Do not chew or crush the extended-release capsules. Your doctor will probably start you on a low dose of dextroamphetamine and gradually increase your dose, not more often than once every week.
Your doctor may tell you to stop taking dextroamphetamine from time to time to see if the medication is still needed. Follow these directions carefully.
Other uses for this medicine
Dextroamphetamine should not be used to treat excessive tiredness that is not caused by narcolepsy.
What side effects can this medication cause?
Dextroamphetamine may cause side effects. Tell your doctor if any of these symptoms are severe or do not go away:
- dry mouth
- unpleasant taste
- weight loss
- changes in sex drive or ability
Some side effects can be serious. If you experience any of the following symptoms, call your doctor immediately:
- excessive tiredness
- slow or difficult speech
- weakness or numbness of an arm or leg
- mood changes
- believing things that are not true
- feeling unusually suspicious of others
- agitation, hallucinations (seeing things or hearing voices that do not exist), fever, sweating, confusion, fast heartbeat, shivering, severe muscle stiffness or twitching, loss of coordination, nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea
- hallucinations (seeing things or hearing voices that do not exist)
- abnormal movements
- verbal tics
- changes in vision or blurred vision
- paleness or blue color of fingers or toes
- pain, burning, or tingling in the hands or feet
- unexplained wounds appearing on fingers or toes
Dextroamphetamine may cause sudden death in children and teenagers, especially children and teenagers who have heart defects or serious heart problems. This medication also may cause sudden death, heart attack or stroke in adults, especially adults who have heart defects or serious heart problems. Call your doctor right away if you or your child has any signs of heart problems while taking this medication including: chest pain, shortness of breath, or fainting. Talk to your doctor about the risks of taking this medication.
Dextroamphetamine may slow children’s growth or weight gain. Your child’s doctor will watch his or her growth carefully. Talk to your child’s doctor if you have concerns about your child’s growth or weight gain while he or she is taking this medication. Talk to your child’s doctor about the risks of giving dextroamphetamine to your child.
Dextroamphetamine may cause other side effects. Call your doctor if you have any unusual problems while taking this medication.
Dextroamphetamine Safety Information
Dextroamphetamine can be habit-forming. Do not take a larger dose, take it more often, or take it for a longer time than prescribed by your doctor. If you take too much dextroamphetamine, you may continue to feel a need to take large amounts of the medication, and you may experience unusual changes in your behavior.. You or your caregiver should tell your doctor immediately, if you experience any of the following symptoms: fast, pounding, or irregular heartbeat; sweating; dilated pupils; abnormally excited mood; irritability; restlessness; difficulty falling sleeping or staying asleep; hostility; aggression; anxiety; loss of appetite; loss of coordination; uncontrollable movement of a part of the body; flushed skin; vomiting; stomach pain; or thinking about harming or killing oneself or others or planning or trying to do so. Overusing dextroamphetamine may also cause serious heart problems or sudden death.
If you take too much dexmethylphenidate, you may continue to feel a need to take large amounts of the medication, and you may experience unusual changes in your behavior
Tell your doctor if you or anyone in your family drinks or has ever drunk large amounts of alcohol, uses or has ever used street drugs, or has overused prescription medications. Your doctor will probably not prescribe dextroamphetamine for you.
Do not stop taking dextroamphetamine without talking to your doctor, especially if you have overused the medication. Your doctor will probably decrease your dose gradually and monitor you carefully during this time. You may experience depression and extreme tiredness if you suddenly stop taking dextroamphetamine after overusing it.
Do not sell, give away, or let anyone else take your medication. Selling or giving away dextroamphetamine is against the law and may harm others. Store dextroamphetamine in a safe place so that no one else can take it accidentally or on purpose. Keep track of how many tablets or capsules are left so you will know if any are missing.
Your doctor or pharmacist will give you the manufacturer’s patient information sheet (Medication Guide) when you begin treatment with dextroamphetamine and each time you get more medication. Read the information carefully and ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions. You can also visit the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) website.