ADHD Medication Interactions

Eileen Bailey Health Guide
  • Drug interactions are when some substance negatively impact how a medication works. Medication can be affected in different ways:

    • The effects of the medication may be increased
    • The effects of the medication may be decreased
    • Side effects can be intensified
    • New side effects can appear

    While we most commonly think of drug interactions as occurring when two different medications are taken, they can also happen because of food/beverage, vitamins andsupplements. According to Shiew-Mei Huang, Ph.D. deputy director of the Office of Clinical Pharmacology the FDAs Center for Drug Evaluation and Research Center, "Consumers should learn about the warnings for their medications and talk with their health care professionals about how to lower the risk of interactions." [1] This is especially important if you see more than one doctor or take more than one medication. If you do have medication prescribed by different doctors, you may want to write down all of the medications you are taking and make sure each doctor receives a copy of the list.

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    ADHD Medications and Interactions


    Each medication is different; each can have different interactions with different substances. Some of the known interactions with common ADHD medications:

    Adderall

    • Should not used with MAOI inhibitors. You should not Adderall for at least 2 weeks after stopping and MAOI inhibitor and not use MAOI inhibitors for at least 2 weeks after stopping Adderall.
    • You should talk with your doctor if you are taking tricyclic or SSRI antidepressants, antihistamines, alpha blockers, beta blockers, high blood pressure medication, antipsychotics, pain medications, anti-seizure medications or other stimulant medications. This does not mean you cannot take Adderall with these medications but you should talk with your doctor to be sure you know what possible interactions to watch for.
    • Foods that affect the amount of acid in your stomach, such as orange juice, can change how your body absorbs Adderall and can impact the effectiveness of the medication.
    • Foods and drinks containing caffeine can also impact how Adderall works.

    Ritalin/Concerta

    • Should not used with MAOI inhibitors. You should nottake medications containing methylphenidate (Ritalin/Concerta) for at least 2 weeks after stopping and MAOI inhibitor and not use MAOI inhibitors for at least 2 weeks after stopping these medications.
    • You should talk with your doctor if you take blood thinners, medication that can increase blood pressure, anti-seizure medications, tricyclic antidepressants, SSRI antidepressants or medications that can increase your risk of seizures. This does not mean you cannot take Adderall with these medications but you should talk with your doctor to be sure you know what possible interactions to watch for.

    Strattera

    • Should not used with MAOI inhibitors. You should nottake Strattera for at least 2 weeks after stopping and MAOI inhibitor and not use MAOI inhibitors for at least 2 weeks after stopping this medication.
    • You should talk with your doctor if you take medication for asthma, fluoxetine, paroxetine or quinidine. This does not mean you cannot take Strattera with these medications but you should talk with your doctor to be sure you know what possible interactions to watch for.
    • You should be cautious taking over-the-counter cold medications as some of these medications can raise blood pressure. Before taking these medications, talk with your pharmacist about which medications would be safe for you to take with Strattera.

    The "Warnings" section of the patient insert you receive with your medication should give you information on what medical conditions you should discuss with your doctor before beginning the medication and what other medications should be avoided.

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    Avoiding Drug Interactions


    The U.S. Food and Drug Administration offers the following tips for avoiding drug interactions:

    • Read drug labels and patient inserts carefully
    • Research and learn about the medications you are taking, especially what it is used for, how it is used, side effects and warnings
    • Keep medications in their original containers, do not mix medications, keep each separate and clearly marked
    • Talk with your doctor about what foods and medications should be avoided while taking the medication
    • Talk with your pharmacist when buying any over-the-counter medication to be sure it is safe to take with your prescription medication
    • Keep a list of all medications, over-the-counter medications and supplements you are taking with you and provide each of your doctors with a copy of the list
    • Use one pharmacy to fill all your medication so someone has a record of all medications and can warn you if there is a potentially dangerous interaction.

    For more information on interactions with food: How Does Food Impact ADHD Medications?  

     

    For more information on side effects: Side Effects of Commonly Prescribed Medications for ADHD and Tips for Managing Side Effects of ADHD Medications

     

    References:

     

    "Adderall Oral," 2007, Staff Writer, First DataBank via HealthSquare.com

     

    [1] "Avoiding Drug Interactions," Updated 2011, April 21, Staff Writer, U.S. Food and Drug Administration

     

    "Drug Interactions: What You Should Know," Updated 200, Feb 17, Staff Writer, Council on Family Health

     

    "Ritalin oral," 2007, Staff Writer, First DataBank via HealthSquare.com

     

    "Strattera Oral," 2007, Staff Writer, First DataBank via HealthSquare.com

Published On: April 21, 2011