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Dexadrine to Wellbutrin disaster

Dexadrine to Wellbutrin disaster2014-04-11T22:50:08+00:00

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  • #124837

    Post count: 3

    Oh jeeze where to begin?


    I’m a 23 year old woman who has been diagnosed with A.D.D. since I was 6 and have been on 2 seperate meds for it for the last 17 years: Ritalin and dexadrine.


    Since I was 12 I have been on 15 mg dexadrine capsules and they work perfectly for me. I am able to function and focus all day with no side effects what so ever. Everything was great up until I moved from Ontario canada to Vancouver BC and had to get a new doctor.


    The doctor decided to take me off the Dexedrine and put me on wellbutrin and it has been nothing but a disaster.


    I’ve been experiencing rather violent mood swings, shakiness, zero impulse control, blurred vision, dizziness, problems with my balance, constantly feeling like I’m stoned, difficulty with speech,  and sensitivities to both light and sound to name a few. It would get so bad that my moods would cycle from calm to heavy sobbing and rage within minutes of each other. I had to book an emergency appointment to see the doctor today.

    I begged him to put me back on my original meds but he flat out refused and would not tell me why. However I did manage to get a referral to a doctor who specializes in ADD so until  I get an appointment I have to start drinking coffee to get the stimulants I need to be able to focus and I HATE the taste of coffee.

    The painful irony of the coffee consumption is that I work at a tim hortons so I get free coffee.


    Has anyone else experienced something like this before and if so what have you done to compensate while you change doctors and medications?

    Needless to say if this new doctor agrees with me that the guy who took me off my meds did not know what he was doing, I’m going to report him to his higher ups.


    Patte Rosebank
    Post count: 1517

    @Silentsaturn91, I’m not an expert, but it sounds to me as if you need to have a serious talk with your pharmacist first, and your doctor second.

    Why the pharmacist? Because you need to find out if you got genuine Wellbutrin or a generic. The generics are well-known to cause the side effects that you describe. You’ll also want to ask any questions you may have about Wellbutrin, Ritalin, and Dexadrine. Often, pharmacists know more about meds than doctors do.

    If the side effects are so severe that you cannot function, ask your pharmacist/doctor if you should stop taking the Wellbutrin. But do not make any changes to your meds or dosages unless they say so.

    Why the doctor? Because you need to find out why he chose to mess with a treatment that had been working just fine for you for so many years. As the patient, you have the right to be fully informed and involved in your treatment decisions.

    Tinkering just for the sake of tinkering isn’t exactly following the “First, do no harm” part of the Hippocratic Oath that all doctors take.

    Wellbutrin isn’t even officially an ADHD med; it’s an atypical antidepressant that can sometimes help with ADHD symptoms. However, it has not been approved for ADHD, so if a doctor prescribes it for that, they’re doing it “off-label”.

    Hang in there; learn as much as you can, and keep us posted.


    Post count: 3

    First off thank you for taking the time to reply.

    Now that it’s the day after the wellbutrin whirlwind, and I’m having my morning cup of coffee, I can fill in a lot of gaps I left yesterday in writing this post.

    1) Talking to a pharmacist:

    I actually spoke to 2 different pharmacists about my doctor switching me to different meds and they both agreed with me that the doctor should not be taking me off the Dexedrine. My doctor also told me that Dexedrine is bad for adults and that it can cause brain damage. Both Pharmacists told me that that’s not true because I’m on a rather low dose of the medication to begin with coupled with the fact that I have been on it for about 11-12 years and if there was a risk for brain damage, my doctors back in Ontario would have been monitoring me like a hawk. It turns out that the highest dose of Dexedrine an adult can take before it causes serious problems is 60 mg. I’m nowhere near that amount.

    However, they did give me the name of another medication to try if the wellbutrin backfired but it has no stimulants in it which is exactly what I need to help me focus. For me, the biggest issue with my ADD is being able to focus. Behavior is fine, mood and energy levels are normal, everything else is fine, it’s just my ability to focus hence why I’m now drinking weak coffee and tea to help me get that low dose that I need to focus like I had originally. (ugh I hate coffee)


    2) The doctor:

    Now, unlike my favorite doctor who uses a tardis ( I had to 😛 ), This guy is rather closed off to his patients. It doesn’t help that his receptionist told me that he’s been known to have patients that either love him or hate him with no middle ground. He’s also fairly young and has only been in the field for maybe 5 years so it wouldn’t surprise me if this isn’t the first time he has done this. There is also another factor: Drug problems are pretty bad out here in Vancouver and there have been cases of people going into the doctors office claiming to have A.D.D., getting prescribed meds like Dexedrine and either selling them on the streets, or grinding them up and snorting them like cocaine so they’re a lot more stringent about giving out those kinds of meds to just anyone. Apparently even though I gave him my medical records from Ontario that clearly state I have A.D.D. and that I need my meds, that doesn’t fly for whatever reason.

    Another big clue I got that he is rather clueless is that he wrote my last prescription of Dexedrine on a pad that is specifically used for obtaining more heavily controlled drugs like Vicodin and morphine. When I gave the prescription to the pharmacist, he gave me a rather funny look and told me that the doctor is not supposed to use that pad for Dexedrine refills and he’s just wasting paper at this point. I told the doctor that and he just kinda blinked at me.


    A good friend of the family gave us the name of a local doctor who specializes in ADD/ADHD and I was able to get a referral yesterday. When I get my appointment, I’m having my dad come with me on this. Why? Well in my family’s case, ADD is genetic. Both my father and grandfather were diagnosed with it yet I was the only one out of us 3 who was put on meds and it worked beautifully on me. That and this doctor of mine has shaken my confidence in the medical system pretty badly. It’s a royal shame too because my mother was a registered nurse when she was alive and she knew that I needed meds for my ADD and if she were here, she would have argued this guy into the ground and made him realize just how dumb his actions are.


    Btw this quack never did tell me why he was refusing to give me back my meds yesterday.

    Finally, what does “off-label” mean and should I be concerned?

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