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Generic Adderall Shortage Has Patients Scrambling for Meds

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By Admin on May 10, 2011 6:46 AM

A generic Adderall shortage, a drug used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), has left patients either going from drugstore to drugstore or opting for more expensive name brands.

Patients who are on ADHD medication say they need the drugs to help them function. Drugs like Adderall helps patients concentrate and perform daily activities.

In many locales, the generic drug is still available, though it is becoming increasingly more difficult to find, reports ABC News. The brand name drug is not reporting any shortages.

Not having their usual Adderall XR prescription refilled can be a headache for consumers on multiple fronts. Some patients will need to try to get their health insurance to cover the cost of the brand name product and some pharmacies do not even carry the brand name product.

Adding to the complications, for some patients the dosage for alternative medications may not be correct and might need to be adjusted. Or, patients simply might not respond as well to them, Erin Fox, manager of the Drug Information Service at the University of Utah Hospital in Salt Lake City, told ABC News Radio.

The shortage has caused plenty of finger-pointing. Shire Pharmaceuticals, the manufacturer, has blamed the U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency for its limits on the number of products that Shire can manufacture. The DEA deflects all responsibility and states that they approved enough of the drug ingredients that there should not have been a shortage.

Amphetamine, one of the components of Adderall XR, is on the list of DEA controlled substances because of its potential to be abused illegally.

During this Adderall shortage, consumers who turn to online pharmacies should be cautious. Make sure that the online pharmacy is in good standing with the National Association of Boards of Pharmacy by checking their site at or by calling 847-698-6227. Pharmacies should not be able to dole out prescription medication without a prescription.

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