View Full Version : Curious about diagnosis experiences. My assessment seemed rushed then only 5mg/day?

02-05-12, 05:53 AM
I'm 31/m knowingly having ADD my whole life and finally wanted to pursue options after trying every homeopathic option and lifestyle change possible. I called my doctor (whom I have a 2 year relationship only pertaining to a broken hand and a cold). I wanted to share my first visit and curious what you guys think.

I only called my doctors office to see if they could refer me to someone who could test (although I knew certainly I was) for ADD/ADHD. The receptionist said my doctor can do that. Surprised, I made an appointment that week. I had read so many waiting months even a year to jump through the hoops I expected alot, and being I'm self employed I always pay out of pocket for everything and was worried if I could afford it.

At the appt. I came prepared as I'd done research for months and felt very informed. I had written out my history, my symptoms, and other facts/data I printed off for reference. The nurse who took my blood pressure gave me a xeroxed form with maybe 15 questions..generic "do you have trouble sitting still, focusing, start projects then quit etc". I checked yes to all. Then my doc came in, looked at my chart and said "ah, adhd ?" I then explained my situation, why I was there and that I trusted him and wanted to explore options to improve myself because Ive tried everything. He started asking for examples of each of the questions on the sheet, I did, and I kept talking about everything and he'd say ok, lets just stick with this for now, and onto the next question as if he didn't want to hear everything I was telling him which I felt was pertinent to my behavior history. Anyway, after asking some things he then asked "well what do you want to try for medication?" Kind of caught off guard I said, well from what I've read Adderall seems the most widely successful one, as well as vyvinanse (sp sorry) dexedrine etc, and said I've heard mostly negative reviews on non stimulants like strattera. He asked had i a history of drug/alcohol abuse I said no I smoked mj since 15 but realize now it was a coping thing and I dont smoke much if at all anymore nor do I drink except the random friday night, and do not get drunk. So then he said, ok I'm putting you on 5mg of adderall xl, once a day and explained a few of the side effects;only anemia, blood pressure and sleep problems. He didnt mention any more then said it is a schedule 2 drug and I may have to take urinalysis and likely a blood test to monitor my health on it. He then said that we will make adjustments to the dosage on future visits. He said if it isnt working or we switch then bring my meds there to dispose not flush them.? He then said ok any more questions? I'm like, well, im sure ill have alot on our next visit. Then I said "that wasnt what I expected I thought there was alot more to it but thanks for working with me." He then stopped and said, "what do you mean by that? If you'd like to see a specialist we can certainly do that." I said "No, I just thought it was a long drawn out process, im relieved you made it painless." I asked if I can set the appointment for two weeks out for an assessment. He said ok.

So obviously he's not a thorough doctor which is strange because he was awesome our first encounter when my hand fracture was misdiagnosed (first thought carpel tunnel they said nope just ice it and suck it up) he was proactive and got me a referall that my insurance didnt cover to a specialist and found it was a fracture and subsequently required major surgery. For him to just ask me 10 questions and flip a script in 25 minutes was weird..but for a measly 5mg? The FDA site states that's starting dose for a 6 year old. I know he's going to up the dose, but 5 seems silly. Also I wasn't weighed either which him bringing up weight loss as a side effect I thought he'd want to weigh me? (even though I am in excellent physical shape) I'm also weirded out by the bring your meds here for disposal comment. I mean, does he think I'd sell them? I know lots do, but would I pay $$ for visits and scripts to make a couple bucks? Also they're 5mg...I would never pay for them. And on the next visit and he ups my script, am I suppost to give back my half months worth even though I paid cash for the damn things? He also told me not to increase my dosage on my own, stick to the 5mg..Is all this common practice?

Im not complaining about the low dose, just confused. I know it will work up to what works for me as I had already been self medicating for almost 2 months prior on 20mg adderall xl with life changing results. (no I didnt tell him I did put alot of thought to it but opted not to for many reasons.) I just hear these incredibly difficult diagnosis timelines and while totally relieved mine was fast, felt it was almost too fast lol..

Next appointment is this week, I'm going to tell him if I felt anything I think it was placebo and would like to try at least 15-20mg and that some days I need them more than others. I also am not going to tell him I take breaks on weekends, which I'd prefer to be honest but I've read some doctors take off doses on your script if you're doing that but I feel it should be my choice and having a few set aside for emergencies or trips or like last month a huge snowstorm closed everything for a week at least I'd have reserves. Maybe he thinks because I pay cash Im a seeker?? I dress conservative and dont look like an abuser but have read doctors are skeptical of cash paying patients coming for ADD treatment, which I understand but in these days of unemployment I'd think there would be an influx of us? Maybe I'm reading too much into his actions because I dont have alot of experience with doctors in general I've been very healthy (knock on wood)

I read alot of peoples doctors/shrinks here have given you the freedom as a responsible adult to adjust your dose within reason. Im assuming that's because you already have an established relationship and time on the meds, but I've read some not and newly prescribed with the same option. what do you guys think? thanks in advance for the input.

02-06-12, 03:23 PM
nada? Was hoping for some insight before my appt. tomorrow...please and thanks.

02-06-12, 03:30 PM
I'm guessing every doctor is different. For example, I went to my doctor 1 week ago. I wrote stuff down/ told her about my history etc. She decided to start me out on Concerta. She told me about the side effects, said since I haven't taken this med before she'd start me out on 18 mg dosage. But was very open with if we need to up it, we can. Also told me that some people take their med 7 days a week, others take it 5 days on, and take off on the weekends. I think every doctor is different. When you go for your next appointment, I would just tell him you don't think 5mg is strong enough for you. I hope I was able to help some. :)

02-06-12, 04:41 PM
I think the best advice is "start low and build slow." More isn't always

Can I ask where you've been getting the Adderall if you didn't have a

The psychiatrist started my granddaughter on 5 mg Adderall (generic) at
age 13, she was already taking Strattera. A year later and there hasn't
been any need to bump up the dose. She's 5'7" and weighs 180#.

No meds should be flushed down the toilet, our processing plants aren't
equipped to remove them from the water supply. But I don't think we
should have to give them to the doctor if the dose changes before we
finish the bottle. You should be able to take two a day and have your
new script post-dated for whenever you would run out of the first one.

02-06-12, 10:01 PM
Ah lunacie..that makes sense about just taking two a day ad post dating the script. If he changes my meds, I'll make sure to make the jump at the end of my cycle.

Peachy- I have been keeping a journal. How is the concerta working for you? Im not set on adderall, it's just what I started with and it's working very well but I'm open to any alternatives even non stimulant ones if this quits working.

So I guess it's not that big a deal he didnt weigh me etc. and the process was almost too easy. In my case that's what I wanted anyway. thanks for the responses.

02-06-12, 11:33 PM
I've only been on it for a week. So I don't want to make any assumptions about it just yet. I'll let you know once I've been on it for a few more weeks. :)

03-20-12, 08:11 PM
Well..updating..I am now after three visits upped to 20mg a day; two 10mg IR's. I feel like a 30xl would be perfect but am satified where I am at for the time being. Life certainly has improved in all areas; love life, finances, my overall happiness and outlook on life. I have a hard time coming to terms that my changes came from a bottle of pills but hard to deny it seems so far to be true and for the best. Some notable negatives drive (even though my relationship is excellent in all areas except in my desire to have sex regularly.) and the guilt I still have from not being able to mentally do this changing on my own without man made substance. that is all:)

03-20-12, 08:18 PM
Sounds like you need to find a more thorough dr. I would recommend finding the closest hospital and going to the family medicine center. It may take a while and you might have to be on a waiting list but they will help you get diagnosed and find a medicine that you want.

But, I am against taking medicines. They really did damage to me and the people around me even though I was making straight a's and loved them at first.

03-20-12, 08:20 PM
Are you sure you needed to change? What was your reason for going?

03-20-12, 08:54 PM
thanks for the response:)

well, in my intro I spewed my reasoning as to getting on a pharma. It started when my sons school advised he may be ADD and meds may help (long story but 4 months later after he adjusted without meds of course, he made all As and Bs and is a model student who has tons of friends and at the last parent teacher meeting actually retracted her opinion of him being ADD or anything close to it..the kid moved across the country is 6 and new school and lifestyle of course he's going to be spacey and not stay on task if he's adjusting... that's texas for ya though).

But it piqued my curiousity and I started reading ALOT about ADD/ADHD and as a spacey unorganized artist by profession I am willing to try anything once, and finally went to my doctor when I connected all the dots and saw what my shortcomings were and the patterns I had that limited what I felt my potential was. I have to say after starting meds everyone around me thought I was born again or something because I completely changed for the better and noone knew I was taking medication. All my self defeating and procrastinating tendencies have disappeared and I am much more patient, loving, relaxed and just overall feel great. I didnt do this as a band aid..I am very athletic already but went on a health binge for two months and cut out all the vairables I felt could effect my moods and up and down behavior (caffeine, alcohol, weed etc)...and I just got worse!

I went into the doc already with my mind made up and after 2 months of research and then self medicating experimenting I was happy I didnt have to jump through a bunch of hoops just to be told what I already discovered was true and since I'm paying cash for the therapy that was a factor as well.

Since being medicated my bills are paid a month in advance, my taxes current, my house clean and organized, my thoughts where they should be and I have a new sense of confidence to drudge through situations I would have evaded prior.

I also gotta say though, that I dont plan to be on this forever. I feel in my mind that after a year I will have developed the habits to stay on this track and will use natural supplements and will just cope with whatever comes back when running on my own.

03-21-12, 02:34 PM
Keep one thing in mind... ADHD isn't a lack of habits to stay on track and act like an NT, it's a neurological problem that inhibits to ability to form and continue these types of things. Meds fill in the gap. Keep in mind it can NOT be cured... only managed with the correct medicines.