Focalin question
July 11, 2006 12:37 PM   Subscribe

ADD sufferers: If you've taken Focalin, what's been your experience? Both Ritalin and Focalin leave me shakey, depressed and unmotivated.
posted by Modem Ovary to Health & Fitness (8 answers total)
Hmmm... "shakes" aren't listed on the side effects for focalin... Are you sure you have ADD? I say this as an educated and experienced person with ADHD, but IANAD. Ritalin, Dexidrine, and Concerta all worked for me, but I now have worked my way off all medication... You may want to ask your doctor about dexidrine since it seems to be a different class than ritalin or focalin. (ritalin=methylphenidate focalin=dexmethylphenidate dexedrine=dextroamphetamine)
posted by tdreyer1 at 1:09 PM on July 11, 2006

OH, also you may want to lower your dosage. When my dosage was to high ( on ritalin ) I would be quite unmotivated and have night terrors (as a child), but as soon as we lowered the dosage, these side effects went away. Again, talk to your doctor.
posted by tdreyer1 at 1:10 PM on July 11, 2006

The only reason I've been on these is because I get them through a medication assistance program since I don't have health insurance.

The anxiety is not worth the savings.

I've been on Adderall, and I'm willing to pay out of my pocket to go back on it. It's MUCH better than the Methylphenidate medications, with no depressive or anxious come-down.

I'm just curiuos as to how many others have had a similar experience.
posted by Modem Ovary at 1:17 PM on July 11, 2006

Yeah, I forgot to mention that I may lose my job soon as a result of being a scatterbrain. I'm hoping to convince my employer to keep me after I start Adderall.

posted by Modem Ovary at 1:23 PM on July 11, 2006

I was going to suggest adderall but apparently you beat me to it. Never been on focalin and Ritalin was years ago and I can't remember anything specifically about it.
posted by Brainy at 4:17 PM on July 11, 2006

Yes, I had a similar experience--methylphenidate (metadate CR, if you must know...) gave me a mild tremor, didn't really motivate me, and made me (more) irritable. Not only are adderall and dexedrine better drugs, they're also available as reasonably priced generics.

And, apparently, Focalin is an overpriced enantiomer of Ritalin, with virtually no advantage over the plain ol' racemic methylphenidate. It's a last-ditch effort by Novartis to keep a proprietary psychostimulant in their pharmaceutical portfolio.
posted by LimePi at 12:10 AM on July 12, 2006

I had a hell of a time with the Ritalin. I feel like it comes on to fast and wears off like a falling elevator. I’m allergic to adderall, which caused itchy white hives to break out on my tongue. I have fount that Concerta is my best. I know it is not chemically different from Ritalin, but the fact that it is time released greatly eased the jagged ups and downs.

As a side, if you have not yet begun taking omega 3 supplements, do so. Our ADD brains to not hold onto Omega-3 well. I’ve taken fish liver oil for several months now. I fell that it has some small effect on my ADD symptoms and that it further eases the ups and downs associated with our meds. I tested the effects of fish liver oil on my own well being in a half assed scien-tastic way. I found that I did not notice significant effect while on it, but did notice a change for the worse when I came off of the oil after 3 months of being on it. In any case, doctors are pretty sure the oil is good for the heart
posted by BeerGrin at 5:58 AM on July 12, 2006

LimePi, exactly. It's all about the money. Methylphenidate and dex-methlyphenidate are virtually the same. Adderall, and probably others like it, is what works for me. I just hope I don't lose my job before my better performance while on Adderall is noticed.

BeerGrin, I've tried Omega-3 and strangely it left me feeling foggy. But that was like ten years ago and my body chemistry is probably different now. Perhaps it is something to consider.
posted by Modem Ovary at 12:05 PM on July 12, 2006

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