Dextroamphetamine is commonly prescribed to treat children and teenagers with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. It is also used to treat narcolepsy. Although the medication is a stimulant, it can have a calming effect in people with ADHD at certain doses. When used in higher doses for treating narcolepsy, it causes a stimulating effect to help keep people awake. Potential side effects include loss of appetite, restlessness, and dry mouth.
What Is Dextroamphetamine?Dextroamphetamine sulfate (Dexedrine®) is a prescription medication that is used for the treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). It is also used to treat narcolepsy. The medication comes in two forms: tablets and extended-release capsules. The extended-release capsules are specially designed to release the medication slowly over time. They can be taken just once a day, eliminating the need to take the medication at school or work.
Because dextroamphetamine is a stimulant and is commonly abused, there are special rules for prescribing it (see Dexedrine: A Controlled Substance).
(Click What Is Dextroamphetamine Used For? for more information, including possible off-label uses.)
Possible Side EffectsAs with any medicine, side effects are possible with dextroamphetamine. However, not everyone who takes it will experience problems. In fact, most people tolerate it well. If side effects do occur, they are often minor and either require no treatment or can easily be treated by you or your healthcare provider. Serious side effects are less common.
The most common side effects of dextroamphetamine include:
- Overstimulation, restlessness, or insomnia
- Dry mouth
- Unpleasant taste
- Loss of appetite and decreased eating
- Weight loss (see Dexedrine and Weight Loss)
- Erectile dysfunction (ED or impotence) or changes in sex drive (see Dexedrine Sexual Side Effects).
Dextroamphetamine can cause high blood pressure. Usually, this increase is temporary and does not cause any problems. The medicine can also increase the chance of seizures and can make certain heart conditions and mental problems worse.
(Click Dextroamphetamine Side Effects to learn more, including potentially serious side effects to look out for.)