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My ADD needs help can you...wait what was I talking about?
October 17, 2011 1:27 PM   Subscribe

ADD Filter (YANMD) - I am at the end of my rope with my ADD symptoms and feel stuck in the fact that heart issues prevent me from going on something like Straterra. Any other options or suggestions?

My ADD is starting to affect my work life and I need to do something about it.

I am mostly off of sugar, I try to keep to-do lists, I get enough sleep, etc but nothing seems to help.

I have occasional heart palpatations so it seems every ADD or ADHD medication is off limits to me.

Any ideas on other medications I might be missing (are there any new ones? or soon to be coming ones?).

Any other tools or techniques to deal with this I might be missing.
posted by UMDirector to Health & Fitness (16 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
 
My ADD is starting to affect my work life and I need to do something about it.

If you could explain this a little more, it might help. Like, is it procrastination, disorganization, getting to work late, forgetting things, not meeting deadlines, what?
posted by misha at 1:50 PM on October 17, 2011


"Heart palpitations?" That phrase seems suspiciously grandmotherly, have you actually seen a doctor? Feeling your heart go "bloop" can also be simply low blood pressure.
posted by rhizome at 2:01 PM on October 17, 2011


Also, nearly all heart palpitations are benign. And not every ADD/ADHD medication is a stimulant.
posted by cooker girl at 2:03 PM on October 17, 2011


Some antidepressants (Wellbutrin, tricyclics) are prescribed for ADHD.
posted by Fee Phi Faux Phumb I Smell t'Socks o' a Puppetman! at 2:05 PM on October 17, 2011


I have palpitations and have been on stimulants with no health-threatening results. Talk to a doc or another doc for a 2nd opinion.
posted by the young rope-rider at 2:08 PM on October 17, 2011


I have a heart murmur and I take Adderall XR and Ritalin with no issues.
posted by easy, lucky, free at 3:01 PM on October 17, 2011


I have mild arrhythmia and am loving my Daytrana patch more than free cake.
posted by elizardbits at 3:06 PM on October 17, 2011 [1 favorite]


I have ADHD and I've found Concerta works very well with far fewer side effects then Ritalin had for me.
posted by Canageek at 3:09 PM on October 17, 2011


Go see a doctor, we, the internet, really can't help you with medical problems/issues.
posted by TheBones at 4:25 PM on October 17, 2011


I just miss things at work - details, etc. For example certain tasks that need to be done or notes on specifically how to do something - language requested, etc. I have become the opposite of detail oriented.

I actually have seen two cardiologists and neither seems excited about putting me on any add meds. I am on Wellbutrin partly in hope it will help, it may have a slight bit but nothing significant.

As far as asking the Internet for advice it is merely a supplement to going to the doctor - but how many times can I go and they not want to put me on anything? At some point others may have tips on how they dealt with it, off label usage of a med their doctor tried,etc. I am not asking for tips on doing open heart surgery on myself. You can learn from other peoples experiences even if they are not a doctor.
posted by UMDirector at 7:12 PM on October 17, 2011 [1 favorite]


I have ADHD, and before I got a prescription for adderall I self-medicated with coffee. It might help.
posted by TheMidnightHobo at 7:13 PM on October 17, 2011


Having self medicated with coffee back in the day, in terms of your health, I recommend the concerta. Not sure what your exact issues are, but you might want to look into Guanfacine.

ADD medication is really not a cardiologist's department so it doesn't surprise me that they aren't too eager to do anything for you. They're world view is mostly centered on your heart going thump thump thump. I don't expect the psychiatrist/neurologist I see would do anything if I was having heart issues other than maybe refer me to a cardiac specialist.
posted by Kid Charlemagne at 10:47 PM on October 17, 2011


As far as asking the Internet for advice it is merely a supplement to going to the doctor - but how many times can I go and they not want to put me on anything? At some point others may have tips on how they dealt with it, off label usage of a med their doctor tried,etc. I am not asking for tips on doing open heart surgery on myself. You can learn from other peoples experiences even if they are not a doctor.

Go see another doctor then. You need to advocate for yourself, if you don't like the outcome or way you are being treated, find a doctor you can deal with.
posted by TheBones at 6:36 AM on October 18, 2011


Speaking personally, the most important thing I've found is that I need medication vacations, or I need to ramp the doses up, to keep the meds functioning. So, there are a few weeks during the year where I'm a flake. I talk to the boss about this, and he's good. I find going to a conference is a perfect time, everything is shiny anyway, right?

The first line ADHD meds do work. Yes, they're amphetamines, and you need to have some care with them, but they work. A cardiologist is a lousy first line mental health provider, and they know that. You need to talk to the correct professional, which is going to something other than a cardio. I'd talk to my GP first.

Normal people get heart palpitations, etc. If you're self-dosing with caffeine, then that's likely the cause of those.

Finally, if you're worried about work and you have a good job and a good relationship with your boss, talk to them and let them know you're having some issues and you're trying to get them sorted.
posted by eriko at 6:42 AM on October 18, 2011


IANAD. But based on my own (obviously anecdotal!) experience, I would suggest going on the lowest dose of Concerta carefully and under the supervision of a doctor you trust. If you are really concerned, schedule an appointment with a cardiologist right before you start, and then see him or her regularly for the first six months. I have slightly high blood pressure, so I am also not "supposed" to be on stimulant medication, but I've been on the lowest dose of Concerta for a year with no negative side effects. It's had no effect on my blood pressure.

If anything, I believe it's made me healthier because it's significantly reduced my stress levels AND allowed me to better organize my life so I remember to do things like eat fruits and vegetables every day and make (and keep!) doctor's appointments.

I'm hesitant to say things like "heart palpitations aren't a big deal" because they can be a sign of a larger problem. But it seems like you've been to cardiologists and the heart palpitations are the extent of it?
posted by lunasol at 9:36 AM on October 18, 2011


My GP is the one that wasn't thrilled about putting my on any ADD meds due to the heart issues.

My cardiologist actually hasn't been consulted about it. I am trying to avoid seeing her until I lose a bit more weight.

I haven't self medicated with coffee as it appears to have raised my blood pressure in the past and contribute to my palpatations. On those rare circumstances when I do have coffee it immediately works. I do feel more focused and productive, I just worry about coffee vs. my heart.
posted by UMDirector at 11:49 AM on October 18, 2011


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