Monday, September 21, 2009

Getting Back on Vyvanse

Going to get started again on Vyvanse tomorrow. Will be on a dose of 50mg vs the previous dose of 30mg. Wish me luck!


Sunday, August 23, 2009

Update on First Day of Adderall

I had pretty bad heartburn last night for about 2hrs, which went away a little before bed. My diet yesterday was pretty normal...

Breakfast: Pasta with green pepper, red pepper, tomato sauce, chicken, mushroom, parmesan.
Lunch: Three cheese tortellini with basil, olive oil and reggiano.
Dinner: Grilled ham and swiss on whole wheat (slightly burned!).

I looked it up and heartburn seems to be a common side effect of Adderall. However, nobody has said how to get rid of it. There are tons of warnings about antacids, tums, baking soda (sodium bicarbonate) and the opposite, citric acid, orange juice etc. I normally get heartburn about once/month and just take a teaspoon of baking soda in warm water, which gets rid of it immediately. Good thing I read the warnings on the prescription. I'm not really sure what happens if you take antacid with Adderall.


Adderall Seems to be Better Than Vyvanse..............

I filled a prescription for Adderall, non XR form today, as I wanted to try something other than Vyvanse for ADD. I went to Target, it took about 20 minutes to fill the Rx. They charged me $15 for the generic, listed only as Amphetamine, produced by Teva Pharmaceuticals (I think they are a trusted maker of generic Rx), rather than Shire who makes the name brand Adderall, as well as Vyvanse. Is this the same as what's in the non XR brand name from Shire?

The adderall hasn't made me tired at all. I took it at about 3PM on a full stomach, upon returning home. (BTW, I did not take Vyvanse today!) I was hesitant to take it, because I had a pretty big and strong espresso at about 10AM, and a Dr. Pepper while waiting for the prescription to fill. I started to feel the effects by within about 30 minutes, and it reached a peak at about 1 hour. The only negative was probably feeling a little grumpy about 7hrs after taking it. So here was my initial impression of the two big drugs for ADD and ADHD.

Day 1: Adderall vs. Vyvanse:
Alertness: Adderall
Less Fidgity: Vyvanse
More Friendly: Adderall
Fatigue: Adderall
Reading: N/A
Mood Swing: Adderall
Focus on Detailed Task: Adderall
Less Easilly Frustrated: Adderall
Price with or without Prescription: Adderall

I'll have to see how it goes from here. Overall, there was much more of what I wanted, and less of what I don't want from Adderall. I have a sailing race tomorrow, so will probably skip a day. No point taking drugs to sail, especially such a new drug, and risk being stuck in the middle of the ocean if there's side effects. People also tend to buy rounds of beers after the races. From my experience of alcohol with Vyvanse, not really something I want to do again.


Thursday, August 20, 2009

Vyvanse Makes Me Tired Tired Everywhere

I'm back to the blog! I was working on a movie, movie party and everything in between for the last couple of weeks. Not to mention my birthday (August 18th), and the BBQ, beach day, Hollywood night and tasty sushi dinner which made the celebration almost a week long :-)

My girlfriend left the country for 3 weeks yesterday. She doesn't like when I take the drug, so I will be taking it more often while she's away, trying to get used to it, and decide between Vyvanse and Adderall XR

So what is with Vyvanse? Seriously? This drug is supposed to keep us awake, alert and focused. Rather the effects I'm getting are more like un-awake, not-alert and unfocused. The pattern has become more apparent and sometimes more exaggerated over time.

Wake up, take the drug, it kicks in after 30-60 min, get kind of energetic, ambitious, go to do stuff and feel the peak effects at about 3hrs. After that, it's a downhill battle against the drug. It does not typically make me more focused or more organized. Worst of all, the headaches have returned! All day long, from a couple of hours after taking the Vyvanse until I take Ibuprofin, it gives me a headache. The headache varies between mild pressure through the entire front of my head to sharp, intense pulses on the side, near my temples. Sometimes my entire head starts to hurt and that's usually when I take two Ibuprofin. Fortunately, the ibuprofin is really effective at getting rid of the headaches from this medicine. They are not as bad as migraines, but definitely not fun or enjoyable - it's a headache, damnit!

One other fun effect is getting strange muscle cramps (anybody else getting these) in my upper back and neck. Vyvanse gives me serious aches in my upper back, they range from throbbing (like my head) to sharp pains that persist for hours.

Lately the drug has really messed up my appetite. Try my method for dealing with this: Eat something small, not too much. Wait about a half hour, and you should feel your tummy recognizing that it wants some food. For some reason Vyvanse makes me completely "forget" that I'm hungry. My food hasn't been tasting as good lately either. Even when I make the same food that I've always loved, in the exact same way, the food tastes different and uninteresting. Parmesan cheese tastes kind of bitter. Mushrooms taste funky. Basil tastes pungent, rather than delightful. And this folks, is a big deal for me, because I love food, and love eating food!

One more persistent effect. I had lunch with my friend Erik today, we went to the same boarding school and university, and he moved across the country for work, just as I did several years ago. We always talk and have great conversations. Today, I just had no interest in what he was saying. I kept feeling annoyed that we were even talking! On top of that, it seemed like I couldn't say anything positive, and couldn't stop but feeling pretty angry about whatever we talked about.

Tomorrow I'll tell you the effects of taking 1 1/2 Vyvanse.


Thursday, July 30, 2009


I keep getting extremely tired about 6 hours after taking Vyvanse. The fatigue lasts for about 4 hours and my focus is even worse than in the morning, or just being tired alone. I think it's the effect of the drugs wearing off. After that, my body seems to rebound and wake up until late at night. The effect is similar drinking alcohol and then being more awake after it wears off, due to the body responding to too much serotonin. During the period the drug is wearing off, I'm extremely irritable, tired, and focus-less. Really considering switching to Adderall or Adderall XR generic. Kind of worried though because of all the negative feedback on the generic, although the generic is supposed to still be manufactured by Shire and identical. Who knows...

Anybody else get this with Vyvanse or Adderall / XR?

Monday, July 27, 2009

Vyvanse Takes the "Me" out of Me

I don't know what it is, but I'm a different person on Vyvanse. I have stopped taking it everyday, for now. I'm just going to use it from now on in a per-need basis. For instance, when I really need to do a lot of reading, write a paper, cover letter, or resume, Vyvanse would really help. Otherwise, it doesn't seem worth taking it lately just to do routine stuff. A lot of what I am trying to do right now is more creative than anything, and the medicine takes that away. For the more busy days where I need to be able to focus for long periods, I'll take it.

Normally I'm a bubbly, friendly outgoing guy. With Vyvanse, I'm not anything like myself. My girlfriend doesn't like when I'm taking it. My friends even say that I'm super quiet and un-interesting LOL! This might be time to start Adderall or Adderall XR. I think people who take that seem more outgoing and friendly when the med is in their system.

One of the lamest parts of all of this is how I'm barely any more organized on Vyvanse. When I took Zyban / Wellbutrin, my organization was scary good. Everything was clean, organized, tidy at all times, at home and at work. I would consider taking that again for the ADHD / ADD alone, and to help quit smoking, if it didn't have so many damn side effects!

Going to talk to the psychiatrist and see what he thinks about all of this.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

Free Vyvanse / Appetite / Reading

I forgot to mention a while back that my initial prescription for Vyvanse was free. The psychiatrist who prescribed it, gave me a card that gives your first 30-day prescription for free. However, while filling this prescription I found out that my insurance doesn't cover the drug. I must have mis-read Anthem Blue Cross' prescription drug formulary, because I don't think they cover any name brand drugs. Knowing this, I decided to go with it anyway, as I'm planning on having a new job soon and hopefully better insurance which would cover brand name drugs. If not, my plan will at least cover generic Adderall, and maybe generic Adderall XR. That still won't help with the supposedely required once/month visit to keep the prescription. The first psych visit was $30, the next one is $70, and after that they are supposedly $170!

The "withdrawal" period last night was better than it has been before. I could tell when the drug was wearing off, but it didn't tire me out so much. It's probably because I have also been sleeping better.

A note on appetite: The first couple of days, my appetite didn't decrease at all. For the last 4 days or so, it's been down quite a bit. What I've been doing is just making sure that I eat a solid meal when I would normally be eat before starting Vyvanse. It's too soon to tell about weight loss.

Reading: I have been doing a good job with reading. It's not a miracle drug, that will make you read 10x faster or not become distracted by anything, but it definitely helps. It's great to be able to sit down and read for more than a half-hour at a time now!

Monday, July 20, 2009

Vyvanse Makes Me Tired!

This Vyvanse is really draining. It seems like the effect of the drug is leveling off. What's been happening the last few days is that I wake up, take Vyvanse before/after breakfast, it wakes me up pretty well. Physically it's similar to having a cup of coffee. Then it just kind of calms me for about 6hours and helps me focus.

The one effect that I was partially worried about and partially hoping for is energy. Initially I was worried the pill would make me feel jittery, nervous, speedy or something, because it's a kind of amphetamine, and people, sadly relate it to methamphetamine. On the other hand, I was hoping for a little more of a pick me up, like coffee gives me. That effect is pretty absent. Overall, the medicine has definitely been short of a miracle (not that I expected one). If anything, it's making me less social and more distant to my friends right now. I would think it would make me more engaging with people, or more cheerful.

Another effect is that, since starting Vyvanse, I have hardly smiled. This is particularly strong while the drug is in my system. The girlfriend keeps saying how I'm not myself lately, and barely smiling or laughing about anything. It just makes me feel kind of out of touch with people around me.

My good friend who's taking Vyvanse doesn't seem to get like this. He's been taking it for about a year, after starting out on Adderall and Adderall XR. He's generally a bit louder and more boisterous of a person, but not my much more.

I'm thinking about trying out Adderall and seeing how that works out. It seems some people prefer Vyvanse, and some Adderall. I've read a lot about Vyvanse vs Adderall lately, and it seems like it will just have to be done through trial and error.

So tired from this drug. Took it this morning at 9 off of 8hrs sleep, and was feeling drained by 3PM. Going to get an extra hour tonight, take a long bike ride in the morning before taking it, and see if that helps.

Any opinions on exercising with Vyvanse and Adderall in your system? Any opinions on Vyvanse vs Adderall?

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Rum + Beer + Vyvanse = Hangover

Had a pretty major hangover today, without drinking too much last night.

Went out with the guys last night, and figured the Vyvanse would be out of my system by 9PM, after taking it at 8:30AM. I had two rum and cokes at home while my buddy had a couple of beers. At the bar, I had three beers, then stayed up pretty late hanging out with everybody afterwards. Slept on my buddies couch on the other side of town at the end of the night.

I normally wouldn't get a hangover from that amount of alcohol, but had a big one today! I figured, oh it's just a little fatigue, came home to take a nap after lunch and took Vyvanse, figuring that if I took it and woke up about 30min later, I would be ready to get some studying done during the day. I laid down for the nap and slept for about 2hrs instead of 30min. The funny part is that my dreams were less random and more focused. Who woulda' thunk it? Maybe a lot of it is also from the lack of sleep this past week.

So now, I'm getting ready to have some dinner and a movie with the girlfriend tonight. Hopefully there isn't too much Vyvanse in my system to sleep tonight, after having taken it at noon.

Day 4:
Vyvanse (30mg):
Wake time: 9AM
Take pill: 12:00 noon
Onset: 2PM?
Peak: 5PM?
Offset: Hopefully before bed

Effects: worse hangover than usual

Activities: not much of anything, going to dinner and movie soon

Side effects: normal appetite, fatigue, small headache, all could be attributed from alcohol and lack of sleep

Overall: Feeling less fidgety than usual, and pretty focused, now that the hangover is going away

Friday, July 17, 2009

Vyvanse - Day 2-3

Well, as it turns out, I haven't been able to get much sleep, just due to circumstances. Monday night, before taking the first pill, I was nervous and didn't sleep too well.

Tuesday night, I was up late (4AM) talking over some issues my girlfriend was having, but slept like a rock after.

Thursday - last night, possibly due to Vyvanse, I was tossing and turning, all through the night.

Yesterday was pretty good, although instead of testing my focus by reading, as intended, a lot of the day was spent taking to a friend. She said that I "seemed more focused and less off-topic" than usual". That's good...

With all of that said, it's somewhat hard to gauge the effectiveness of the drug at this point.

Sailing last night went pretty well. I felt a little more focused than usual, even with the drug pretty much worn off. Afterwards the girlfriend and I went to dinner with some friends, by that time I could feel the Vyvanse wearing off. It seems that when it's wearing off, there's a sudden fatigue and a bit of nervousness for some reason.

I'm dragging big time today, with barely any sleep last night. I'm meeting up with friends for the usual "Friday Guys Night" tonight, and could probably nap for 4hrs if there was time.

Day 2:
Vyvanse (30mg):
Wake time: 10AM
Take pill: 10:30AM
Onset: 11:10AM
Peak: 2PM
Offset: 5PM

Effects: little bit of dry mouth, normal appetite, awake, calm

Activities: talked to friend, read, CAD, bit of cleaning

Side effects: from about 12 Noon for about a couple of hours, 2-second headaches in different parts of my head, normal appetite

Overall: Felt pretty focused at Border's, slightest bit of difference in physical feeling. Less fidgety, less changing sitting position, steady, relaxed.

Day 3:
Vyvanse (30mg):
Wake time: 8AM
Take pill: 9AM
Onset: 10AM
Peak: 1PM
Offset: 3PM

Effects: dry mouth, normal appetite, focused, tired, calm

Activities: reading at B&N, met with friend for lunch, errands, creating charger for bluetooth

Side effects: only a couple of those 2-second headaches today, very tired, but that's my fault

Overall: I felt pretty focused today, just extremely tired. This drug is definitely not going to make up for lost sleep.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

My First Day on Vyvanse / First Post

Hello everybody. First of all, since most of the readers will probably be ADHD, I chose the least distracting and best organized layout for this blog.

Since this is the first post, I will introduce myself:
I'm a guy in my mid-twenties who recently faced the music and decided to treat his ADHD (sounds like some sort of commercial LOL).
College degree: Physics
Activities: A lot
Smoking: ~10/day (now trying to stay on nicoderm and nicorette to quit)
Drinks: ~10 once a weekend

My first diagnosis was at the age of 3. In Headstart, (pre-K) my teachers told my mother I was mentally retarded and would run around the class, and basically do whatever I wanted. After seeing a psychologist, they diagnosed me with ADD. My mother refused to put me on Ritalin, after seeing what it did to other kids at the school.

Long story short, after two years of Headstart, and another two years of kindergarten, everything was not smooth. Although I graduated high school with a 3.9/4.0, college proved to be more difficult. The math problems became longer, and more difficult. The papers grew from a few pages to a few dozen. Something that was easilly managed and often funny became much more problematic. In school, I was constantly on detentions for talking back to teachers, defying teachers, and that type of thing.

Obviously, I studied my ass off with the new challenges in college. With ADHD I would spend hours studying, often barely getting anything done, just staring at the books, looking at every distraction, rarely able to concentrate on the materials.

The classes I did best in were the more interactive classes. Where interaction wasn't allowed, I would often interrupt the teacher with off-topic questions and annoy them to the point of surreptitiously lowering my grades.

OK, this is getting pretty boring, and I keep switching between AIM, Facebook and watching TV. So here's the rundown.

Story of the day:
Today I started Vyvanse, and decided I should take this seriously (as I really don't like taking prescriptions and medicine in general) and try to get the most out of it by documenting it. Only I realized that instead of documenting it privately, it would be help a lot of people if it is public. Each day, I'm going to try to document my progress with ADHD, the drug I'm taking, and any other steps to improve the symptoms.

Day 1:
Vyvanse (30mg):
Wake time: 10AM
Take pill: 10:30AM
Onset: 11:30AM
Peak: 2PM
Offset: 4PM

Effects (in order): lightness, less distracted by birds, cars, people, shower felt great, want to clean/organize, started to feel pretty focused

Activities: organized a little, did small tasks, went to Barnes and Noble read for 4hrs!

Side effects: 2PM headache started, thought it could be a caffiene headache so I ordered a small coffee at 3PM, headache persisted, kept reading until 4:30PM, came home, extremely fidgety from 6PM to 7PM, ate dinner, headache persisted, took 400mg ibuprofin at 8PM, headache gone by 9PM.

Overall: Felt pretty focused when I was reading at B&N, lots of noises, music, people, coffee grinders, noticed little of it, and was distracted less by things that I noticed until about 4PM. No real "buzz" feeling, which I was worried about, physically felt a little like Sudafed (either original pseudoephedrine or phenylephrine).

All in all - Good day, minus the headache.