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Adderall - Brand vs Generic


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Hey everyone,

Been a while since I checked back in here.  I've been on Adderall XR 20mg for the past 5 weeks and things have been going well.  After my body adjusted to the weirdness, it just become smooth and effective.  There is still considerable room for improvement, but things are definitely looking good.

Now I'm on the issue of cost - this stuff is expensive.  My insurance covers maybe 25% of it, and I now have 1XR tab in the morning and one IR tab in the early afternoon, so my monthly bill for pills is getting high.  Do you all have any advice for getting insurance to cover more of it?  How about shopping around for different pharmacies?

Also, I have a generic form of IR - what are you experiences with generic IR Adderall vs brand name?  The specific one I have is from Barr Labs.

Thanks!

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Hey there, Newbie.

I've had the same experience - lost the "weirdness" factor, all is going well. The results are very pleasing. I am not sure I am at optimum dose yet, but am plugging away at making the most of where I am - which is WAY better than where I was.

I have only been taking the generic IR version (I don't know who makes mine - they are small blue oval tablets) and my cost is around 10/month, so little the insurance doesn't even kick in.

some say there is a big difference, others say not so much. either way, I always figure that If I find the right effective dose in a generic, provided I go the the same pharmacy and get the same one each time, it all comes out in the wash. So I stick with it.

Since Adderall is essentially Dexedrine with Levo-Amphetamine added (Pure Dexedrine is Dextro-Amphetamine only - the isomers are diffferentiated by a reverse spinning molecule or some such), and Dexedrine had been around since the 1920's or so with little to no changes, I figure even the generics aren't going to be too far off on these. They are both (Adderall and Dexedrine) apparently very simple compounds so they're probably not easy to screw up.

Can't swear to it, though. Others may have a different opinion.

Glad it's working well for you, too.

pigs

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  • 2 weeks later...

I've been on Adderall XR for about two weeks now.  I haven't yet tried the IR - I'd rather not have the sudden rush and sudden crash I hear about with it.  So far, it's been very helpful, though with some concerning side effects, just like with the Strattera that I eventually had to stop for fear of liver toxicity.  (I'd say more, but I figure that would go better in a general Adderall discussion; is there one on the board?)

It iiiis very expensive.  If you don't mind my asking, how much are you paying per month?  My prescription for Adderall XR 10mg #80 ran about $350.

I just found out at my psych visit this morning, however, that there's apparently a program run by the company that makes Adderall XR, to help you pay for it if you can't, though I'm assuming this depends on your income level (though I fail to see how ANYONE in the middle class or below can afford an additional $350 a month).  I plan on persuing this very actively.

Another option, again depending on your income, will vary from state to state, but you may be able to find a general health clinic, funded largely by the federal government (i THINK), that will let you get your meds for MUCH cheaper.  I don't have insurance, and I managed to get seen for a throat infection at a clinic here in Baltimore for $15, end of story.  Antibiotics cost another $15.  This is a place that has it's own pharmacy, so that's naturally what you'd want to be looking for.  The pharmacist told me that my Adderall XR would cost $90 a month or so there.  The trouble is, at least where I'm going, you'll have to get the prescription from a doctor at the clinic, which may or may not have psychiatrists.  This doesn't mean you have to stop seeing your regular pdoc, you just may have to supplement it with a very cheap visit to the clinic pdoc (or GP).  I haven't yet tried this, but I'm planning on it.  My assumption is that it will involve being very frank with the clinic doctor, saying that this is definitely what you need, but you can't afford it, unless he discards the prescription you have, and writes you another one.

Again, remember I haven't tried either of these options yet.  Of course, there may also be state-funded medication support.  I'd suggest looking into that, it depends on the state you live in.  You also have to remember that these clinics may very well be lacking in some ways.  If you have any unusual concerns, it may be harder to have those addressed here.

Good luck, hope any of these options help you, as I'm hoping they'll help me.

And remember, if all this fails, you can always move to Canada!  ;)   Or just wait 10 years or so before the patent on the XR expires and they can start making generics.

- Phrank

P.S.: Sorry, I noticed after I wrote all this that you have insurance.  If I remember correctly, the first option I mentioned is only applicable to people without private insurance.

malenkylizards@gmail.com

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Why the second dose of IR in the afternoon? If you are taking XR, half the dose should release about an hour after you take it and the other half about four hours later. Are you taking the afternoon dose in the late afternoon to get you through the evening? That might make sense.

If you're good about remembering to take your meds, you could go straight IR, 2-3x/day.

Even brand IR is going to be cheaper than the XR. Generic IR even cheaper. I've been on both and never noticed much of a difference, but my pdoc swears that the generic doesn't work as well - in his personal experience, anyway.

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Hmm...The harsh comedowns I've heard about with IR have turned me off.  It'd be nice to be able to afford my meds, though.  Is there a way to take IR without all the sudden peaks and valleys?

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(I'm trying Dexedrine now, but here's my experience)

I was last taking Adderall 7.5 mgs/3xday. To avoid the dark valley, I found myself taking (except the morning, of course) 2.5 mgs at 4 hours, 5mg at 5 hours. Basically giving myself a little headstart on the valley.

My pdoc did not seem especially perturbed by this (it is at my request that we are trying Dex - to see if I can escape some of the janglies and muscle tension - so far, so good but only on day two).

This "graduated dosing" method seemed to smooth things out considerably, but was a wicked pain in the butt.

pigs

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Good news.  The bans been lifted  :)

They WOULD have to lift it two WEEKS after my pdoc latched onto Strattera.  *grrrr*  Well, we'll see this week if we're going to a) raise the Straterra b) taper off the Straterra because "OMFG I'm autistic, NURR" or c) give something else a try.  It is good to have knowledge.  Thank you.

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