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Old 06-16-05, 12:56 AM
Daniel'sMom Daniel'sMom is offline
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Hello, my son is on Adderall XR

My son was diagnosed after much testing as having ADHD in May, 2003. He has been on several meds; currently we have him on Adderall XR and Tenex. What has been a big problem with him is with any of the stimulants is that he has been on is that they have caused head and facial tics. But what has been done most recently this week was increasing his Tenex by giving it in the morning as well at night. We started this 2 days ago and we have already noticed a great reduction in the tics. He is 9 years old and just finishing up 3rd grade and kids can be so mean.
Just trying to find a right medication can be a blessing and is but one of the pieces of the puzzle in dealing with and trying to help a child with ADHD.
I am fairly new here. Thank you for allowing me to write.

Lisa (Daniel's Mom)
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Old 06-16-05, 02:04 PM
MillenniumMan MillenniumMan is offline
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so the XR caused him to have tics??? omg! what the heck!

I think XR should be taken off the market now totally not just
in Canada this is quite scary.
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Old 06-20-05, 08:09 PM
theblueangel theblueangel is offline
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Hi, Daniel's mom, a.k.a. Lisa!! My name's Andrew, and it's nice to make your (cyber-)acquaintance!

I'm not familiar with Tenex - what class of drug is that? (Never mind, I'll just google)...okay, I see that it's generally used to treat high blood pressure, so I'm guessing that your son's doctor is using it "off-label" w/ the hopes of decreasing or eliminating the tics? I suppose I can guess well enough what the facial tics are like, because it's probably very close to what I do. The funny thing is that I seem to have the opposite reaction to stimulants. When I take my Adderall and make sure to get good sleep and eat, the tics are greatly diminished...although they're not gone. The Adderall itself definitely seems to help diminish the tics quite significantly...although sometimes when I first take it the tics actually seem to increase in intensity and frequency. Odd, huh?

In my case, I didn't take any kind of psych medication until I was 21. (I'll be 30 in August.) Since then I've taken various antidepressants - Prozac, briefly Depakote, Seroquel, Wellbutrin, Effexor. Prozac was the first and worked great for a while and then I stopped taking it b/c I felt like I didn't need it anymore....and that seemed to be okay for a year or so....but then in 2002 I was again so depressed and completely devoid of motivation that I knew I needed to start taking something again. Cue Effexor, which I still credit with giving me the "spark" I needed to get out of several bad, stagnant situations I had become mired in....it allowed me to understand that actions have consequences...well, without any meds I would still know that they had consequences, and I might even think about what they were and how much this or that would suck, but then I would inexplicably go ahead and do it anyway.

The only odd thing I noticed initially (and over time) with the Effexor was that it had me moving my tongue all around my mouth, and pursing my lips, and grimacing, and doing other strange facial movements. Now, I remember that when I was very young I used to do all sorts of things like that when I was trying to concentrate really hard, like when I was learning to write in cursive, for example - but it wasn't something that happened otherwise.

Eventually my doctor and I added Wellbutrin to the Effexor, as we felt that I really needed some help with my motivation, and executive skills, and overall energy -- and God bless Wellbutrin, it was helpful in all areas. But I did notice that my facial tics seemed somewhat more pronounced and now I was doing weird movements with my hands/fingers along the side of my body - hard to explain, but you probably get the basic picture.

I guess what I'm getting at is that my doctor believes (and I've found info supporting his theory on the internet -- of course I'm sure I could find info on the internet supporting the theory that the moon is made of cheese, so I'm not claiming authority here) - anyway, he thinks that the tics were caused by the antidepressants I had taken and was still taking. He offered to lower the dosages, but I declined because quite honestly I'm at a higher level of functioning now than I've ever been in my life, so I'm okay with the tics. (Not to minimize your son's classmates teasing him or anything...I certainly know what that's like, and I feel for him, and you -- but for whatever reason going through things like that tend to give one a deeper sense of empathy and understanding later in life....or at least that's what I believe.)

Sorry to be so rambling. Basically, I'm new here too. I've been on Adderall for 4 months now and have had fantastic results. Unbelievable, really. It's SO helpful for my self-esteem, confidence and self-image to actually be able to open up and deal with the mail that I get at my apartment, for example. For years I've been trying so hard to do just that but inevitably would go a couple days without opening it, and then it would be a week and I'd have this huge intimidating pile of mail, which would just grow and grow and grow, and finally I would have literally 4 or 5 months, once as much as 9 months of unopened mail, and it would stress me out to no end....but strangely, not enough to allow me to actually get through it. The Adderall finally allowed me to just DO it and stop obsessively worrying about it.

What other ADHD meds has your son tried, if you don't mind me asking? I'm wondering if all stimulants would exacerbate his tics, or if there might be one out there which would do the opposite, like Adderall seems to do for me. Since this is the first ADHD med that I've tried, I don't have anything to compare it to. I read somewhere online that Vitamin E supplements are good for tardive dyskinesia (tics) and so I now take 2 of those Vit. E gel-capsule things that you can get for cheap at any grocery store or pharmacy, etc. - and in my experience, it does seem to help somewhat, but who knows if it's b/c of the Vit E or any of twelve million other factors.....

Listen to me drone on and on and on with nothing to say......sadly, I have to say this is not atypical of me!

I am curious as to whether your doctor is attempting to decrease the tics with the Tenex and if s/he has given you any other tips or suggestions for reducing the tic symptoms - dietary or supplemental, whatever.

Although to be honest what really made me write this is I was touched by your identification of yourself as "Daniel's Mom," and thinking about what a lucky little boy Daniel is to have such a concerned, active, loving mother! I work in a social services agency, and day after day after day I see kids your son's age with parents who either mistreat them horribly or completely neglect them, and it's sad. My own mother would never have called herself "Andrew's mother," that's for sure! She means well in her own twisted, self-obsessed, incredibly overcritical way, but I often wonder how many of my neuroses I could have avoided if I had been born with a motherly, nurturing mom. Don't get me wrong, I love my mom, and I would deny everything I've said if anyone ever told any of it to her.....but to this day my biggest issues are with unreasonably low self-esteem and body image issues (when I was a kid my mom told me that all of her friends were asking her if I was sick because I was so skinny, and for whatever dumb reason, to this day I can't get that out of my head....even though I now have a pot belly!)

Sorry to drone on....and best of luck with Daniel. Please report progress or ask questions or share your feelings on here as much as you like - it's so helpful to me and certainly to many many other people who read this forum but rarely post.

Basically, Lisa, a.k.a. Daniel's mom, you rock!

-Andrew
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Old 06-22-05, 01:09 AM
Daniel'sMom Daniel'sMom is offline
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Hi Andrew:
Yes, Tenex is for blood pressure normally. But it is also used to help calm children who are hyperactive and, in Daniel's case, he gets it to stop or at least minimize the tics. I have noticed a great deal of improvement since he has started taking the extra dose in the morning.
The other meds he has taken were Ritalin which caused bad head tics, Valproic Acid ( a seizure medication) to help him slow down and focus in school and Strattera which did nothing to help him. Also Concerta which, like Ritalin, caused head tics as wel. He has even had mouth tics.
This combination of Adderal XR in the morning with Tenex and at bedtime taking the Tenex seems to do well for him.
We have spoken briefly with his pediatrician about diet....but not alot. Not with his neurologist either. I have heard about avoiding alot of sugar and red dyes....but thats about it.
We try to be firm and loving in dealing with his behavior....he can be quite frustrating at times. We make our best efforts in dealing with him.
Thanks for your response!
Lisa (Daniel's Mom)
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Old 06-23-05, 09:43 AM
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I am adhd and have been on Adderall XR since March 18. It's a wonderful enhancement for me. I have not noticed any side effects yet. I take a 20 mg XR at 630am and a 10 mg IR at 300pm.

My add husband started Adderall on June 2 and it's been nothing but heavenly around here. He's pleasant, happy, easy to get along with, and cooperative. When we go out, I noticed that he is much more talkative and he hasn't self medicated with pot for over 2 weeks. He takes a 20 mg XR in the morning. (30 mg was too much for him and his heart jumped out of his skin. He doesn't tolerate caffine pills either.)

Since I had such great results both at work and at home from Adderall (which included loosing weight ), on June 1 we switched my 12 year old adhd son from Metadate to Adderall.

He started out 9 years ago on a Homeopathic Remedy. Then to Ritalin. Then to Dexadrine. Then back to Ritalin. And then Metadate.

Metadate was doing pretty good but he is very very self conscious about a spare tire he has so I thought we'd give Adderall a try for him too. Then we'd all be on the same medication and could relate. (This is the first time my husband and I have been properly medicated. My son has been on meds for 9 years.)

Besides adhd, my son also has ocd, mood disorders and learning disabilities. He takes Respirdal, Zoloft, and Clonidine too.

At the same time he started Adderall, we also dropped his daily Respirdal from 3 pills per day down to 2. The Respirdal is for behavior and works great but it causes him to gain weight and also makes the blood vessels in his face/ears MAJORLY red when he runs around or plays a little. He hates that. So we really want to wean him off the Respirdal.

When we tried to wean him slowly off Respirdal in May when school let out, he immediately became moody and developed a noise tic again. (He made a grunting/throat clearing noise, which he has done in the past but it had relatively gone away. He also does the sniffing and eye blinking stuff too. Poor kid.)

So in May we upped his Respirdal back to 3 a day instead of 2 and he immediately got better as far as moodiness and the tic.

Anyway, when we started Adderall on June 1 (3 regular release 10 mg per day), we also lowered his Respirdal again down to 2 per day. For over 3 weeks it was going great until this past weekend (5 days ago).

On Sunday late afternoon he got majorly crabby and moody plus his noise making tic came back too. These are the same two symptoms that came when we lowered his Respirdal last time. The tic is 100 times worse though. He hates it and we add/adhders can't tolerate it. We upped his Respirdal once again to 3 per day to see if the tic goes away.

I am doing a write up for his doctor. I have several thoughts.....

Either he needs to be on 3 Respirdal's per day or the tic resurfaces...or
The Adderall isn't for him as it brought out the tic he already had....or
The Adderall dose isn't correct.

I know it takes a while to get the correct medicine along with the correct dose along with the correct doseage time, as we have been doing this forever... but this is so frustrating.

I just want him to have one regular, normal, non-tic, non-moody fricking day this summer.
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Old 06-23-05, 12:49 PM
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I JUST started taking XR 10mg yesterday, and after taking two pills, it definitely helping with my symptoms all day, but starting in the late evening, I got really jittery and restless and woke up this morning with a headache...

That bites that your son has developed tics, but I can definitely understand because I got really shaky last night and still feel that way this morning...
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Old 06-23-05, 01:09 PM
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I have a friend whose son is about your son's age. From what I understand, he is doing great on the Adderall XR.

She will probably answer your post. I know she can give you some insight.

best wishes and nice to meet you Daniel'smom.
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Old 06-24-05, 08:51 PM
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Last night my son's noise tic was horrible. He did several of the noises per minute all day and night long.

The Adderall keeps him up later than normal so as he was awake watching tv, he made that noise all night. A constant small grunt. Not the throat clearing tic that he had in the past. But a small grunt. We closed the bedroom door and another door and both my adhd self and my add husband couldn't sleep because of it. Finally, when he went to sleep, we went to sleep.

I faxed a 2 page note to his doctor in regard to his having the tic issue since Sunday.

His nurse called back and said that yes, Adderall has been known to bring out a tic in people and to go ahead and put him back on Metadate.

So when he woke up this afternoon (after being awake all night due to the Adderall), we went back to Metadate. (Atleast my husband and I have extra Adderall if we forget to get our refills.) We are going to keep his Respirdal at 3 per day but want to eventually wean him off of it.

Anyway, everybody is different and not everybody can take the same medication.

I had been watching my sons every move since beginning Adderall. I had noticed when my son started it, he kept licking his lips. I told him that Adderall gives me a dry mouth too and to make sure that he keeps drinking fluids. Plus I gave him some vaseline chapstick to carry around. I live on sugarfree carbfree candy mints for my cotton mouth. I also told him that even if he wasn't hungry, he had to eat plus take a multi vitamin at night.

The Clonidine that he takes at night usually knocks him out between 930-10pm when he's on Metadate but with Adderall, the Clonidine didn't seem to phase him. He was up late almost every night.

Anyway, we will play it by ear. Even though he hasn't had any Adderall today, he has the noise tic still. That's because the Adderall is still in his system. Hopefully by tomorrow we will be back to "normal". (What is normal?)

I'll keep you posted.
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Old 06-27-05, 09:53 PM
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My sons noise tic went away as soon as we started him back on Metadate CD from Adderall. The Adderall worked wonders for the first 2 or so weeks and then the tic started. My husband and I have not had any unpleasant side effects with the Adderall.
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Old 07-26-05, 09:22 AM
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We have a doctor's appt for my son on Monday so that his doctor can fill out his back to school paperwork etc and discuss his current meds.

As mentioned a month ago, we put my son back on Metadate and his constant tic noise that he was making on Adderall seemed to have gone away but "it's back" but not nearly as bad as it was when on Adderall. He's still on the 3 Respirdal's per day.

He only has a few more weeks until school starts so hopefully his doctor can adjust or up or lower or add something for his noise. It's kind of a throat clearing/grunt. It's not every few seconds like when on Adderall but it is every few minutes. But not all the time.

He will for sure get made fun of in school for it and he really wants to stop making the noise. He's so self conscious as it is.

My husband and I both are still having great results with Adderall. The best is that our family life has improved 100 percent. We all enjoy being with each other. Not the constant baby type bickering that went on pre-Adderall. I felt like my husband and son were twins. Now we like going swimming in our pool together, we like driving somewhere without nagging, etc...
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Old 08-02-05, 12:30 PM
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We went to my son's doctor appt yesterday and discussed his noise tic, among other concerns.

His doctor said that our changing from Metadate to Adderall may have brought out his noise tic but chances are, lowering his Respirdal is what caused it to resurface. In the past, lowering his Respirdal caused tics.

We are leaving him on Metadate, Respirdal and Zoloft (adhd/ocd/mood disorder) plus we are increasing his Clonidine at night. His doctor said that Respirdal and Clonidine are both prescribed for tics. We will see how it goes for the next 30 days.

If we do not see an improvement with his noise tic in the next 30 days, he suggested that we may want to go see a neurologist.

We are keeping our fingers crossed.
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Old 08-02-05, 01:00 PM
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I'm sorry if this duplicate advice that someone above me has already shared with you; but, I'm short on time right now and don't have time to read them all.

It took us about two days to decide that he definatly had something going on after starting Adderal XR. He "twitched or would jerk his head to the side really fast when speaking". His doctor said it would subside but it didn't and he started developing more tics.

When we took him off the Adderal the tics went away quickly. We've found more success with non-stimulant ADD meds personally.

Except of course that annoying tic that will probably never go away. You know the one I'm refering to, where he has no fine muscle control and his poor sister just happens to walk by everytime his arm swings out. Of course it isn't his fault O' never that.
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