Originally published March 16 2009
Adderall: Deadly Drug Treats Bogus Disease
by Barbara L. Minton
(NaturalNews) The drug Adderall is linked with heart attack and sudden death in children and young adults according to a newly released study at the New York Medical College of Family Medicine. This drug is commonly prescribed to treat Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), a phony disease that has been diagnosed in 15 percent of school-aged children. Although incidence of heart attack and sudden death is greater in children who take Adderall on a regular basis, it has also been associated with one-time users.
Clinical trials to establish the long term effectiveness of Adderall have not been conducted. There are no controlled studies involving children on Adderall for longer than three weeks, or involving teens and adults for longer than four weeks.
Twenty year old suffers heart attack after isolated use of Adderall
The study, published in the March-April edition of the Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine, reports the case of a twenty year college freshman who had been diagnosed with ADHD two years earlier and prescribed 15 mg Adderall XR to be taken daily. He had not taken the drug on any regular basis and had not taken it at all for weeks before his cardiac event. He had been staying up late studying every night and drinking a relatively small amount of alcohol before going to bed. The night before his admission to the hospital, instead of going to bed, he had taken two Adderall (30 mg) to keep himself awake to study for an exam. Later that afternoon, he developed chest pain and pressure which stayed with him and necessitated his parents taking him to an emergency room 24 hours later.
The young man's history was unremarkable except for the diagnosis of ADHD. There was no family history of cardiovascular diseases. He was not a frequent user of illicit drugs and drank alcohol only occasionally. He had no known drug allergy and took no other medications in addition to his infrequent use of Adderall. The final diagnosis was myocardial infarction secondary to amphetamine-induced coronary vasospasm. He was discharged after five days and told to avoid any drug containing amphetamine.
Devastating heart inflammation can follow Adderall use
Another study, reported in the American Journal of Therapeutics, May-June, 2008, describes a patient who developed cardiomyopathy (severe inflammation of the heart) after taking Adderall. The patient's cardiac function deteriorated to the point of heart failure, and necessitated a heart transplant. The researcher noted that cardiomyopathy associated with amphetamine use is a serious and potentially lethal condition.
Adderall is in the same drug class as speed and meth
Adderall is an amphetamine drug, the class of drugs commonly referred to as speed or meth, and just like the other drugs in its class, Adderall is highly addictive. Adderall started out as a weight reduction drug for adults called Obetrol, but it was taken off the market because it was so strongly addictive.
Amphetamines stimulate catecholamine release, particularly dopamine and norepinephrine. Amphetamines derivatives are known on the streets as ice, crystal, and ecstacy. These drugs are among the fastest growing illicit drug problems worldwide. Overuse or misuse of prescription drugs containing amphetamines, such as Addereall are popular with college students because they promote wakefulness, heightened energy, and enhanced performance.
Complications associated with the acute and chronic use of amphetamines include rapid heart rate, and high blood pressure. Heart dysrhythmias, cerebral hemorrhage, enlarged right heart ventricle resulting from disease of the lungs or pulmonary blood vessels, and blood vessel wall inflammation have also been reported. The class of amphetamines has been well documented as causing myocardial infarction. About one-quarter of those reporting to emergency rooms with chest pain and methamphetamine abuse are diagnosed as having an acute coronary syndrome. A recent study found that 20 percent of children taking such central nervous system stimulants as Adderall visit a doctor with heart-related symptoms such as racing heartbeat.
Alcohol used with Adderall creates a deadly combination because alcohol competes with amphetamines for the metabolizing enzymes in the liver, therefore enhancing the bioavailability of amphetamine.
Adderall has a frightening list of side effects seldom revealed to parents
Adderall has been called the study drug due to its use and abuse among students, who use it to stay up late to study or complete a paper. It is also used to help them stay up late to party and some even claim that Adderall allows them to drink more. In addition to the cardio effects, Adderall's effects on the central nervous system include psychotic episodes, over stimulation, restlessness, dizziness, insomnia, euphoria, vertigo, irritability, euphoria, depression, tremors, headache, tics, Tourette's syndrome, seizures, and stroke. Dryness of the mouth, unpleasant taste, diarrhea, constipation, anorexia and weight loss, rash and blotches, hypersensitivity and symptoms resembling anaphylaxis have been noted.
Some children taking Adderall or other drugs prescribed to treat ADHD have reported frightening hallucinations during which they see snakes and bugs crawling over them. Others report sensations such as the feeling of running into something when nothing is there.
Many parents whose children take Adderall report they were never told of the dangers or side effects of the drug, and their children received no heart studies prior to being prescribed the drug. Their children's pediatricians tell them only that Adderall helps children succeed in school. Once these parents become properly informed, many make the decision to take their children off the drug.
Adderall disenfranchises children
Adderall teaches children psychological dependence on drugs at an early age. When children are labeled as deviant and placed on Adderall or other drugs to treat ADHD, their self-confidence is undermined and they lose their ability to perform well and to study without them. Children who have lost faith in their own abilities are destined to lose their individuality and their ability to think and advocate for themselves. They are destined to grow into adults who are unable to participate in and defend their democracy.
Prescriptions for Adderall or any of the other ADHD drugs send children a clear message that something is wrong with them because they are unable to tolerate endless days of sitting in a seat doing irrelevant tasks and busy work. It teaches them that the problem is not with the school or the education system; the problem is with them.
The disenfranchising effect of such a label and the treatment that goes with it is linked to students losing the vision of themselves as successful participants in society. The result is that many of these children are doomed to acting out and self-destructive behaviors such as smoking cigarettes, binge drinking, risky behavior behind the wheel, use of street drugs, and inability to form relationships.
Health Canada suspended Adderall use
In 2005, Health Canada suspended sales of Adderall XR after data collected by its manufacturer, Shire Pharmaceuticals, linked the drug to twelve sudden deaths by stroke in American children between the years of 1999 and 2003. This was on top of several reports of children with heart complications following Adderall use. The FDA chose to leave Adderall on the market in America, and secretly lobbied Health Canada not to take it off the market there. Health Canada has subsequently returned the drug to the marketplace, without any evidence of its safety or effectiveness.
ADHD is a fraudulent disease
ADHD is a recently fabricated disease that grew out of the diagnosis of attention deficit disorder, created by the American Psychiatric Association. It was warmly embraced by teachers and school personnel who jumped up and down at the thought of medicating the active students who were making their lives miserable. In the traditional school environment, which most closely resembles that of a prison, there is no tolerance for rambunctious students, and teachers who have them in their classrooms are constantly under the evil eye of administrators for failing to control them.
With the solid support of the educational establishment, the inability to sit still through a day of mind numbing boredom and regimentation was turned into a disease. In psychiatry, all it takes to create a new disease is for a consensus to be reached that some observable behavior is actually a disease. Once a disease is agreed on, it is entered into the current version of the diagnostic and statistical manual, and becomes as if chiseled in stone. Diseases that go into this manual do not come out. Each revision produces a new and thicker book in which diseases are referred to as disorders.
Recent estimates are that more than 20 percent of school children are taking ADHD drugs or some other type of psychiatric medication. School districts receive extra money for each child that is diagnosed with ADHD and placed in a special education class because of it. Many parents are happy about ADHD because they get paid too, about $400 a month from Social Security.
How many people do you know that exhibit these symptoms?
The Diagnostic and Statistical Manual-Fourth Edition (DSM-IV) criteria for diagnosing ADHD have been interpreted by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention in order to make them "more accessible to the general public", and remind readers that they "should be used only by trained health care providers."
I. To be diagnosed requires meeting the criteria in either Part A or B.
Part A. Six or more of the following symptoms of inattention have been present for at least 6 months to a point that is disruptive and inappropriate for developmental level:
1.Often does not give close attention to details or makes careless mistakes in schoolwork, work, or other activities.
2.Often has trouble keeping attention on tasks or play activities.
3.Often does not seem to listen when spoken to directly.
4.Often does not follow instructions and fails to finish schoolwork, chores, or duties in the workplace.
5.Often has trouble organizing activities.
6.Often avoids, dislikes, or doesn't want to do things that take a lot of mental effort for a long period of time (such as schoolwork or homework).
7.Often loses things needed for tasks and activities.
8.Is often easily distracted.
9.Is often forgetful in daily activities.
Part B. Six or more of the following symptoms of hyperactivity-impulsivity have been present for at least 6 months to an extent that is disruptive and inappropriate for developmental level:
1.Often fidgets with hands or feet or squirms in seat
2.Often gets up from seat when remaining in seat is expected.
3.Often runs about or climbs when it is not appropriate (adolescents or adults may feel restless).
4.Often has trouble playing or enjoying leisure activities quietly.
5.Is often "on the go" or often acts as if "driven by a motor"
6.Often talks excessively.
1.Often blurts out answers before questions have been finished.
2.Often has trouble waiting one's turn.
3.Often interrupts or intrudes on others.
II. Some symptoms that cause impairment were present before age 7 years.
III. Some impairment from the symptoms is present in two or more settings (e.g. at
school/work and at home).
IV. There must be a clear evidence of significant impairment in social, school, or work
V. The symptoms are not better accounted for under another mental disorder.
If you are thinking that theses symptoms describe half the people in the world, you are correct. This is all the better for the sales of pharmaceuticals.
School coerces parents to get their children on drugs
Parents of unruly children are contacted by teachers or school officials and told they must take their child to his pediatrician and have him evaluated for ADHD and placed on medication. They are told that if they do not follow through with the request, their child will not be able to learn and will fall behind his classmates, fail, and be required to repeat his grade level. Some parents are even told that without the medication, their child will no longer be able to attend the public school where he is enrolled.
Parents accept that the school is telling them the truth and assume that their child will be doomed unless they drug him. After a short appointment with a pediatrician the diagnosis is made. It is not necessary to perform any medical tests of the child, because there are no medical tests that will diagnose ADHD. It is a diagnosis based completely on hearsay. Many school psychologists are not aware of any request for a diagnosis of ADHD that has been denied, or any request for medication that was not granted.
ADHD has become a life long diagnosis
As ADHD first gained popularity it was told to parents that the disease would be outgrown and their children would only be on medication for a few years. No such thing occurs now. As children grow older their dosages are increased and they are led to believe they cannot function at all without their drugs. ADHD has become a life-long diagnosis. Once a child gets into the cross hairs of teachers or administrators, the diagnosis and drugging is virtually guaranteed.
Children's lives are being stolen and destroyed because they are irritants in an educational establishment devoted to mindlessness and regimentation, and mandated to turn out empty headed automatons to take orders from the corporate and military elite. With a diagnosis of ADHD and the drugs that come with it, the ability of a child to achieve his life's destiny is thereafter altered along with his ability to think and create. His health is compromised and his behaviors, responses, feelings, and emotions are changed.
Children who cannot tolerate the senselessness, tedium, regimentation, and lack of real and meaningful experience in the typical school environment are likely to be the ones who, if they were not drugged, would be capable of having individual thought and vision. It is not the children who quietly acquiesce to the psychological and mental drubbing that goes on at school that will grow up to be the innovators and creators for the next generation. It is the children who refuse to tolerate such an early life experience and act out against it that have the real potential to guide the future.
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About the authorBarbara is a school psychologist, a published author in the area of personal finance, a breast cancer survivor using "alternative" treatments, a born existentialist, and a student of nature and all things natural.
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