Health professionals believe that taking Adderall can contribute to Adderall bipolar disorder, or heightened or increased bipolar behavior in bipolar patients-- Adderall is also prescribed to people to treat bipolar disorder. Currently, Adderall bipolar attorneys are investigating Adderall bipolar lawsuits.
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Adderall Bipolar Disorder
Adderall bipolar attorneys are investigating safety concerns regarding an increased rate of bipolar disorder in patients currently taking Adderall. As well, research indicates an increased severity of Adderall bipolar side effects in individuals with a past history of Adderall use for ADHD in childhood (American Journal of Psychiatry 163 (7).
Adderall for ADHD
Ritalin and Adderall
Methylphenidate, (brand name Ritalin) is an amphetamine derivative and potent central nervous system stimulant that can lead to a psychosis from chronic use.
Edmund S. Higgins, clinical associate professor of family medicine and psychiatry at the Medical University of South Carolina states, "Methylphenidate has a chemical structure similar to that of cocaine and acts on the brain in a very similar way."
Both Ritalin and Adderall go to brain cells and stop them from taking up dopamine and norepinephrine—chemicals associated with focus, motivation and pleasure. Adderall takes this process one step further: it goes inside the brain cells and causes them to pump out dopamine. It therefore blocks the reuptake of the substance and also acts to increase its levels directly, which means it is a stronger medication than Ritalin in some regards and is usually prescribed about 1/2 that of Ritalin.
(Ritalin' widespread use has resulted in a number of lawsuits claiming that ADHD is being over diagnosed to boost Ritalin sales to children who are simply unruly. More recently, Ritalin's potential for abuse in public schools is so high that US House Judiciary Chair Henry Hyde recently filed a request with the General Accounting Office to conduct an investigation.)
Adderall Bipolar Addiction
One blogger writes:
- "My husband is bipolar and was prescribed Adderall by his doctor. He complained of mood changes and aggression
He subsequently suffered a psychotic episode."
Bipolar Children and Adderall
According to ParentsMedGuide.org, ADHD medication does not cause bipolar disorder, but ADHD medications "can make pre-existing manic symptoms worse". The American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (AACAP) says that in rare instances, these medications "may also cause manic episodes or behavior. If your child becomes manic or overly irritable while taking ADHD medication, contact your child' doctor immediately".
However, The New York Times reported that AACAP expert Russell Barkley, Ph.D., receives or has received research support, and acted as a consultant and/or served on a speaker' bureau for Shire Pharmaceuticals Group—the maker of Adderall.
Shire Pharmaceuticals states the following Contraindications on its Adderall label:
- Bipolar Illness
Particular care should be taken in using stimulants to treat ADHD patients with comorbid bipolar disorder because of concern for possible induction of mixed/manic episode in such patients. Prior to initiating treatment with a stimulant, patients with comorbid depressive symptoms should be adequately screened to determine if they are at risk for bipolar disorder; such screening should include a detailed psychiatric history, including a family history of suicide, bipolar disorder, and depression.
- Emergence of New Psychotic or Manic Symptoms
Treatment-emergent psychotic or manic symptoms, e.g., hallucinations, delusional thinking, or mania in children and adolescents without prior history of psychotic illness or mania can be caused by stimulants at usual doses.
The FDA Advisory Panel has recommended Black Box Warnings for Adderall and other ADHD/ADD Drugs.
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