View Full Version : Can't tolerate ADD stimulant meds (acid reflux) - adderall is the worst


canitbeADD
08-26-09, 04:20 PM
Hi All,

30 year old male - diagnosed 6 months ago (finally).

First I tried Ritalin 5mg up to 3x per day - 1 month
Then I tried Adderall 10mg 1x per day (or 5mg twice per day) - 1 month
Then tried Dexedrine 5mg 1x per day - 1 week

With all of these meds (but especially adderall) I have had severe acid reflux to the point where I can't take them. if i stop taking them, after about 1 week my reflux/heartburn settles down.

This is puzzling because I know these are very low doses. Has anyone experienced anything like this?

Starting today I am going to try 2.5mg Dexedrine per day to see if it will help me adjust to the side-effects. Believe it or not but I get nervousness and some acid reflux (though not terrible) with even this small amount.

My doc said if this doesn't work I will have to try Stratterra or Wellbutrin.

Thanks for the insight!

xraylady33
08-26-09, 04:32 PM
How about a 14 day course of NEXIUM?This is a healer, and not always needed for long term use.
What is your diet like...Have you tried protien powder with the meds?
Give me an example...maybe I can help...
Are you on antacids...not calcium types?
I am a bit surprised with side effects...yet each day there are new effects from all meds...
Best of luck...

canitbeADD
08-26-09, 04:39 PM
Sorry I should mention that I already take Prilosec daily for acid reflux, I have a history of on/off acid reflux. Prilosec worked fine until l started these meds. I tried doubling the dose and it didn't make any difference. Also I have tried taking H2 blockers and regular antacids in many different combinations.

Im on a diet that is supposed to reduce acid reflux quite a bit as well, no citrus, etc.

I have not tried taking protein powder with the dose, it seems worth a shot!

Ganjin
08-26-09, 07:24 PM
Hi canitbeADD,

I've had acid reflux most of my life. Nexium or Prevacid are more effective than Prilosec OTC. I would ask your doc for Nexium or Prevacid if Adderall is working for you otherwise. I've used these medications for nearly 10 years now on and off, with no side effects at all. They can be real life savers!

tarabeatty
08-26-09, 07:52 PM
I experienced bad acid reflux on my first week of Vyvanse, amongst other side effects, and then it leveled off. After 3 weeks of Vyvanse, I tried Dex Spansule, and had no problem with reflux but also had no effect on symptoms of ADD and made me tired.

Will be trying Adderall next. Just got script today. I hope reflux is not a problem on that.

canitbeADD
08-26-09, 07:52 PM
Ganjin,

Thanks for the reply. Interesting that it doesn't aggravate your reflux, I had an endoscopy done last week just to make sure something else isn't going on. The test was basically normal but with some gastritis/reflux.

I have tried Nexium and it didn't really work for me. My doc said that a double dose of prilosec should take care of it but it actually makes me feel worse. In general I think PPIs don't work well for me... though I have to say that neither do zantac/pepcid etc. I suppose I could give prevacid a try.

The other possibility is that these meds affect my LES (lower esophageal sphincter) and so I am getting reflux regardless (though not always acidic).

Unfortunately there is no easy way to test this...

I might have to go for wellbutrin if this slow titrating-up doesn't work.

Ganjin
08-26-09, 08:06 PM
The other possibility is that these meds affect my LES (lower esophageal sphincter) and so I am getting reflux regardless (though not always acidic).

Yah, I think that makes a lot of sense. The stimulants could be making that little valve extra nervous. If that's the case, you can minimize the pain and damage by keeping your stomach pH in line. But you'll still have reflux regardless.

That's a tough problem, because I know very well how uncomfortable and dangerous reflux can be. My sister is 49 years old and has severe Barrett's esophagus (precancerous scarring) from years of untreated reflux.

canitbeADD
08-26-09, 08:24 PM
Ganjin,

Thanks this is precisely why I can't decide what to do. I know reflux is dangerous and I was really worried I would have barrets. I quit Dexedrine for two weeks but still had some problems with reflux daily (though not nearly as bad as while I was medicated).

My gastroenterologist just said "taking adderall/dexdrine is like drinking 8 cups of coffee", but beyond that didn't offer any advice. Maybe when I go to review my test results I can press him further on it.

My Psychiatrist wants me to start wellbutrin (with low-dose Dexedrine) but I am tempted to just stop taking all meds for a month and then maybe start over.

On the other hand, maybe the stomach upset effects will go away if i maintain low-dose for a month or two?

Ganjin
08-26-09, 08:31 PM
My Psychiatrist wants me to start wellbutrin (with low-dose Dexedrine) but I am tempted to just stop taking all meds for a month and then maybe start over.

On the other hand, maybe the stomach upset effects will go away if i maintain low-dose for a month or two?

Yah, no easy answer there dude. I took Wellbutrin for about a month, and it had no effect on my reflux either. I've never used dexedrine, so? Let us know what you decide to do.

xraylady33
08-26-09, 10:31 PM
It may be like taking the consumption of coffee..
Coffee itself will affect digestive enzymes...but not Adderall..
Try Zantac..OTC..if you do not want to pay the co-pay for nexium..which is usually upwards of 30 bucks...
I was on nexium for a long time, and decided to go off of it, due to serious diet control...the protien will help..try it....even with milk if you can tolerate it...
Keep us posted.
X

Kill__Joy
08-26-09, 11:58 PM
When I first started on Adderall it made my acid reflux go totally out of control. After a while it settled down though. Before I started adderall, I was taking 2 Prilosec a day/after I started adderall I began to take probiotics and experiment with different supplements.
Ive been on adderall for almost a year now and my meds are~


20mg Adderall XR 2x day
40mg Prilosec 1x day
1 zantac 2x day

Supplements~ Oregamax, fish oil, probiotics, 500mg vitamin c at bedtime, magnesium taurate usually around 400mg at bedtime when I remember to take it. Oregamax really helps my stomach, I really recommend trying it, you can get it at a health food store. I got it from a friend but I didnt really think it would help but its pretty good stuff so now I buy it.

Ive been dealing with acid reflux disease for about 4 years and I know how terrible it is. Ive done sooooo MUCH research and tried all kinds of different supplements and techniques to get rid of it so Im kind of an expert on it lol. If you have any ?s you can PM me, I can probably help you out.

canitbeADD
08-27-09, 12:03 AM
Kill_Joy

Thanks so much for the reply. Any idea how long it took for your reflux to calm down? Also did you take adderall daily during this time?

The thing that is odd is that increasing prilosec dosage seems to make things worse. It seems like it really slows down digestion.

Kill__Joy
08-27-09, 01:15 AM
Kill_Joy

Thanks so much for the reply. Any idea how long it took for your reflux to calm down? Also did you take adderall daily during this time?

The thing that is odd is that increasing prilosec dosage seems to make things worse. It seems like it really slows down digestion.

No prob!:). I cant really remember exactly but I know it took a few weeks for it to calm down. I remember the first day I took adderall though, I had full blown acid reflux symptoms, every symptom in the book lol.

And absolutely not, theres no way I could tolerate taking it every single day at that time, it got really bad and took a while to get it back under control. Sometimes I was so desperate that I mixed baking soda with water and drank it, nasty but effective.
If I were you, I would go really slow with the adderall and start from a really low dose and continue to work your way up. SKIP days!! And I mean that. When I first started adderall I would skip 2 or 3 days in a row.

You really have to get in tune with your body. If you feel bad and you think that you cant tolerate adderall then DONT take it that day, but if you feel like you can then go ahead and take your dose.
This is what I did.
But remember, you NEED probiotics, you can get them at walmart/walgreens/health food store etc. PPI's and antacids just treat the symptoms. You have to get your stomach back on track! You need to get all that "good" stuff in there and keep it balanced. Cant really recommend a good probiotic right now but Ive been taking Acidophilous Pearls and Philips Colon Health. Ive been looking around, when I find a really good one Ill let you know.
Can you tell me some of your symptoms? I know everyone is different and this crappy disease can really mess you up in so many ways. Do you have just GERD or LPR or both? I have both.
Hope I helped you some, Its hard to focus right now so if I missed something Ill be sure to make a new reply.:D

Kill__Joy
08-27-09, 01:20 AM
Oh and about the prilosec, Ive heard about people taking a higher dosage of their PPI and it making them feel worse=/....idk I HAVE to take 2 prilosec a day but thats just me. How long have you been taking a double dose and Im guessing its 40mg a day??

lightxosleeperx
08-27-09, 06:27 AM
I haven't read the rest of the posts because I am in a hurry, but I have to tell you, I have acid reflux as well and know what you are going through.

It's hell, really, it is.

It may not be the Adderall in itself. Prilosec has always been recommended to me by doctors, however, it has NEVER worked, and sometimes made me feel worse. It always made me feel sluggish or nauseated, or just plain didn't work.

I buy something over the counter that is the offbrand of pepcid. Its Famotidine 10 mg. I used to take it more often, but since starting it, I actually have felt better. (I've been using it for the past 8 months or so...)

Please give it a try and if it does not work, please send me a message. I feel like a pro at managing acid reflux. I really would like to help.

M1K3Y
09-23-09, 04:10 AM
I had the same problem. I had always had slight issues with highly acidic foods inducing heartburn and whatnot, but when I started taking dexedrine/adderall (at different points) it was definitely exaggerated.

I took adderall occasionally for months, 2-6 times a month. However, the dexedrine IR (dextrostat) is what I took daily for 2 months which really started major isuses.

I would occasionally take a teaspoon of baking soda with my doses to help the heartburn and simultaneously boost the effects of the amphetamines, but i'm sure that disrupted my ph balance...

After a while it got to the point where I needed to go to the doctor. After a colonoscopy and endoscopy they determined that I had IBS (Irritable Bowel Syndrome) and said that I was having severe spasms in my stomach when they were taking a look. Prilosec, Zantac, Alka Seltzer.. tried them all. Work to a certain extent, but the problems never went away. I'd say Prilosec is the most effective, but loses effectiveness after a certain period of time.

I had also tried Donnatal and Reglan from my gastroenterogist. Both felt very artificial to me and would just mask the problem.

Took a break from ADD medicine for 6 months, all my stomach issues went away. Completely. It is definitely due to the stimulants. Best bet is to just come off them if it is bothering you that much. My spasms went away, my heartburn, acid reflux, and everything went away.

Mind you I was at the point of wanting to vomit after meals, burping up acid, not being able to drink coffee because of the nausea.. Serious issues. Once again, they all went away as I stopped the pills.

PS. Reglan has a second mechanism of blocking dopamine receptors so it stopped my ADD medication from working, but would actually speed up digestion. The side effects of Reglan aren't worth the benefit.

Good luck!

hollographic
08-30-13, 10:29 PM
When I first started on Adderall it made my acid reflux go totally out of control. After a while it settled down though. Before I started adderall, I was taking 2 Prilosec a day/after I started adderall I began to take probiotics and experiment with different supplements.
Ive been on adderall for almost a year now and my meds are~


20mg Adderall XR 2x day
40mg Prilosec 1x day
1 zantac 2x day

Supplements~ Oregamax, fish oil, probiotics, 500mg vitamin c at bedtime, magnesium taurate usually around 400mg at bedtime when I remember to take it. Oregamax really helps my stomach, I really recommend trying it, you can get it at a health food store. I got it from a friend but I didnt really think it would help but its pretty good stuff so now I buy it.

Ive been dealing with acid reflux disease for about 4 years and I know how terrible it is. Ive done sooooo MUCH research and tried all kinds of different supplements and techniques to get rid of it so Im kind of an expert on it lol. If you have any ?s you can PM me, I can probably help you out.


Yes I just started adderall xr at 15mg 5 days ago and symptoms of acid reflux started to develop although I believe I had minor symptoms of acid reflux before taking adderall. I'm scheduled to step up to 20mg in 2 days but obviously that would be a problem. Adderall is pointless because I can't concentrate with the chest pain. I heard other solutions that are sold at Vitamin stores like dietary supplement betaine HCI, it raises your acid levels and apparently your acid levels drop further when your on adderall resulting in acid reflux. I was wondering if you have tried that also and found Oregamax to work better, any insites helpful.