View Full Version : super low dose, still horrible sidefx. any hope??

03-11-17, 11:23 PM
So I'm a 30yr old woman, and I was only diagnosed with ADHD 2 months ago (and everything about my whole life and me as a person suddenly made sense!).
In that time I've been on 3 meds, and none have worked out, and I was really hoping Vyvanse would be the one, but even at tiny doses (5mg?) it's kind of doing nothing good/only side effects.

Let me give you a brief med history:

1. Concerta (18mg) I was put on that for a week, but as I'm on a PPI (stomach acid med) it wasn't slow-release for me, and just released all at once. It was an intense and unpleasant 3 hours, after which I was so exhausted I could barely move. so since most of the other extended-release meds work by being enteric coated, and my PPI dissolving them instantly, we decided to try....

2. Ritalin (5-15mg, 1-3x day) So far this worked best for me, but the side effects were unbearable. At higher doses I could focus like an absolute machine, but the crash was so painful. I was beyond irritable, depressed, and physically all my muscles hurt. It was so bad I just wasn't taking my doses. Lower doses didn't do much, except make me a bit more focused on one thing, while making it harder to focus on external tasks/switching. So I didn't feel super present. And I still crashed off the lower dose.

3. Vyvanse..... so I did my own research, read that vyvanse isn't affected by stomach ph, and my dr. decided to try me on it, starting with 30mg.

Day 1: 30mg Well, let me tell you, that was waaaaaaaay too much. For 5 hours I couldn't make facial expressions, retrieve words, kept forgetting I was in reality, and was so overfocused I couldn't put on mascara. Oh, and I was so paranoid and couldn't stop crying and apologizing to my bf for crying. In the eve when it wore off it was actually kind of ok, but at that point I was drained. It was so strong, I felt it all the next day and THAT was when it actually felt beneficial. Like, I was energized and positive and on the ball. (this was day 2, i didn't take anymore that day)

Day 3&4: 15mg ok, not fun, still felt like a zombie, but less so, for 3ish hours, then was a crabby, overwhelmed foggy mess the rest of the day.

Day 5: try 30mg again after reading it might take a week to stabilize, ugh. As bad as the first day, I am a machine, it is unpleasant. I research and realize these are the side effects when a dose is too high.

Day 6: 7mg. Ok, feeling alright. Feeling clear-headed and productive and motivated for the first time in days. Feel good for 30 mins. Wait, uh oh, ok now it feels too intense for an hour. Ok, wait, now it's completely worn off and I'm so tired I can't speak. Need to take 5mg ritalin just to make it home.

Day 7: 5mg. Ok, now I feel nothing beneficial, at all. I feel ex.haust.ed, lethargic, forgetful, horrible. I felt better without it. After a few hours of that I take 5mg Dexedrine, wondering if the dose is too low now (I have a midterm next week and I haven't been able to study in days, I'm not a masochist). This was a mistake. I end up sobbing in a ball in bed, while my bf goes and gets me dinner because I had to kick him out because every sound he made was so irritable as to be painful. Huge headache. Moodswings like crazy. Overwhelmed.

TL/DR; Even tiny doses of Vyvanse seem to be very strong for me, and I'm getting tons of negative side effects.

SOS!!! Has anyone else gone through something like this? Where even seemingly tiny doses affect them this much?

Does anyone think there's hope for me and Vyvanse still?
The reason I keep trying it is because it's the only long-release that might work for me (because of stomach acid issues) and I don't want the constant crash from Ritalin IR.

So maybe it's a matter of finding the right dose still? I'm taking 2 days off everything and then going to try 5mg again. Maybe starting at a dose that was way too high for me screwed up the whole week??

(My psychiatrist is a PTSD specialist, and so he knows nothing about adhd, he's pretty much just going off what I research and request to try)

03-11-17, 11:43 PM
PPIs inhibit acid release and do not potentiate the release of OROS delivery medications.

And in any event, only 22% of the med is contained in the outer coating.

Vyvanse is the weakest of all the amphetamine-based ADHD medications.

Perhaps you are med sensitive. Perhaps you have another or additional conditions/disorders that might help explain your response to typical medications.


03-12-17, 01:02 AM
If you have any caffeine at all, quit now. It might help a lot.

I say this over and over and over again... People get irritated, but if it helps you, then let them be irritated. :)

03-12-17, 06:19 AM
As far as I know, vyvnase doesnt come in small doses like 5 or 15mg. Am I wrong? How are you getting 15 mg pills? If I am wrong let me know.

03-12-17, 12:11 PM
As far as I know, vyvnase doesnt come in small doses like 5 or 15mg. Am I wrong? How are you getting 15 mg pills? If I am wrong let me know.

The info on says it comes in 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, 60, and 70 mg.

I suppose you could try to divide a 10 mg capsule in half, but there's no way to
know if you're actually getting half in each dose. I have no idea how you'd get
7 mg. :scratch:

03-12-17, 04:35 PM
Thanks for the replies peeps! :)

Aeon - yes, PPIs lower the stomach acid, so they cause OROS meds to act as if they have already reach the more basic small intestine and open up.
They are actually all contraindicated with stomach ph altering meds, because it causes them to be released prematurely, but my dr. was unaware of this because he doesn't know what he's doing. So the concerta, and any other med that has a ph sensitive coating, like Adderall XR or Dexedrine XR will all open in my stomach at once. Therefore they are not options :/

And yes, I seem to be incredibly sensitive to the Vyvanse, but not all meds cuz I could tolerate higher doses of Ritalin.

dvdnvwls I don't drink any caffeine, so luckily I don't have that interaction :)

sarahsweets & Lunacie I was prescribed 30mg capsules, so I was dividing the doses. To get 15mg I split it equally, and then to get ~7mg I took 1/4th (so more like 7.5mg, but I'm sure it wasn't exact), and then ~5mg was just a bit less than a 1/4th. All rough guess-timations.

03-12-17, 04:41 PM
Oh, and another update:

So 2 nights ago I woke up twice because one of my hands had completely fallen asleep, and it was very painful. Like that pins&needles feeling you get from cutting off the circulation, but I wasn't sleeping on them or anything.

So I'd forgotten about it until last night, when I was having the horrible reaction of just lying in bed unable to get up and crying uncontrollably (which is completely unlike me) and my hands were feeling really weird again.
My bf noticed the veins in my hands were HUGE and bulging out like I've never seen them before. That was what felt weird/kind of hurt with them.
I also had a headache. Looked up hypertension (high blood pressure) and it's also a side effect of Vyvanse. So I drank some hibiscus tea (lowers blood pressure) and went to bed. Woke up with my hands hurting and tingling, but not completely asleep. Then today they're back to normal.

It was the WEIRDEST thing. How can such low doses of Vyvanse have such strong side effects? I'm on day one of not taking anything, and I feel tired and foggy, but so much more like myself again.

03-12-17, 04:59 PM
Are you eating?

Are you staying hydrated?

This is really confusing. I'm lost.

03-12-17, 06:03 PM
Or, is there anything else that pulls your profile away from "average"? A gruelling exercise routine? A special diet? Do you sometimes put on a ridiculous costume, flex your muscles, and spend all night foiling the evil plans of notorious criminals? :D

03-12-17, 08:22 PM
Apparently some doctors do recommend dividing the dose, mixing it into water
or juice and drinking half.

Also, it doesn't seem to matter if you use apple juice, they claim stomach acid
doesn't affect this med.

Maybe this isn't a good med for you either. Maybe 1 percent of the population is
allergic to a popular med used mostly for hypertension. Yeah, I'm the 1 percent.

03-12-17, 08:41 PM
Vyvanse passes through the stomach unchanged, and is absorbed later through a process that can only happen in the small intestine. The acidity of the stomach contents makes zero difference to the Vyvanse.

But it might make a difference to some other thing, under special circumstances. I have no idea what.

03-12-17, 09:59 PM
dvdnvwls I KNOW! I'm lost too! No special diet or anything other than having GERD (high stomach acid) for which I take the PPI medication. And yes, I've read it doesn't affect the Vyvanse (did research to the point where I was reading the actual studies they've done on it and PPIs, I took nutrition in school so I can decipher the mumbo jumbo, and there is no interaction)

The only thing with Vyvanse and pH is that if you have something that acidifies your urine, like vitamin C, then it's excreted faster. And I read a lot of people's online accounts of it lasting longer when they take Tums or something, but I have no idea if that's true.

So yeah, no special diet or exercise routine or anything. Definitely no crime fighting :D
I was almost wondering if it was building up in my body somehow, since the side effects kept getting worse, even with smaller doses, until yesterday I took such a small one, and was messed. up. :confused: :confused: :confused:

Lunacie That sucks :/ Yeah maybe I'm in some sort of 1% bad reaction as well. It's just so weird. I've been fine when I tried Dexedrine before, and seemed fine the first time I took Vyvanse (just way too strong a dose for me, no side effects that weren't just from taking too much)

03-12-17, 10:57 PM
I see three obvious possibilities.

1. Maybe you can't tolerate amphetamine.

2. Maybe you can't tolerate Vyvanse's particular chemistry trick.

3. Maybe you have some still-undiagnosed other problem.


4. Maybe I have no idea what I'm talking about. :)

03-13-17, 01:22 AM
Maybe you just don't tolerate stimulant medication well.

There's many non stim medications. These are some just off the top of my head.

FDA Approved:


And of course various combinations.

My strongest recommendation would be to find a doctor more familiar with ADHD if at all possible.

03-13-17, 04:16 AM
Bumblebee- have you ever considered taking multiple smaller doses of something like dexedrine every day?

03-31-17, 03:09 AM
If you have a quirky digestion system, maybe ask your doctor about Daytrana. It's a patch that delivers methylphenidate through your skin.