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Amphetamine

Pronunciation

Generic Name: amphetamine (am FET a meen)
Brand Names: Adzenys XR-ODT, Dyanavel XR, Evekeo

What is amphetamine?

Amphetamine is a central nervous system stimulant that affects chemicals in the brain and nerves that contribute to hyperactivity and impulse control.

Amphetamine is used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

The Evekeo brand of amphetamine is used to treat ADHD and also narcolepsy. Evekeo is sometimes used to treat obesity in people who have not lost weight with diets or other treatments.

Important information

Amphetamine may be habit-forming, and this medicine is a drug of abuse. Tell your doctor if you have had problems with drug or alcohol abuse.

Stimulants have caused stroke, heart attack, and sudden death in people with high blood pressure, heart disease, or a heart defect.

Do not use amphetamine if you have used an MAO inhibitor in the past 14 days, such as isocarboxazid, linezolid, methylene blue injection, phenelzine, rasagiline, selegiline, or tranylcypromine.

Amphetamine may cause new or worsening psychosis (unusual thoughts or behavior), especially if you have a history of depression, mental illness, or bipolar disorder.

You may have blood circulation problems that can cause numbness, pain, or discoloration in your fingers or toes.

Call your doctor right away if you have: signs of heart problems - chest pain, feeling light-headed or short of breath; signs of psychosis - paranoia, aggression, new behavior problems, seeing or hearing things that are not real; signs of circulation problems - unexplained wounds on your fingers or toes.

Before taking this medicine

You should not use amphetamine if you are allergic to any stimulant medicine, or if you have:

  • moderate to severe high blood pressure;

  • overactive thyroid;

  • severe anxiety, tension, or agitation (stimulant medicine can make these symptoms worse); or

  • a history of drug or alcohol addiction.

Do not use amphetamine if you have used an MAO inhibitor in the past 14 days. A dangerous drug interaction could occur. MAO inhibitors include isocarboxazid, linezolid, methylene blue injection, phenelzine, rasagiline, selegiline, tranylcypromine, and others.

Some medicines can interact with amphetamine and cause a serious condition called serotonin syndrome. Be sure your doctor knows if you also take opioid medicine, herbal products, or medicine for depression, mental illness, Parkinson's disease, migraine headaches, serious infections, or prevention of nausea and vomiting. Ask your doctor before making any changes in how or when you take your medications.

Stimulants have caused stroke, heart attack, and sudden death in certain people. Tell your doctor if you have:

  • heart problems or a congenital heart defect;

  • high blood pressure; or

  • a family history of heart disease or sudden death.

To make sure amphetamine is safe for you, tell your doctor if you or anyone in your family has ever had:

  • depression, mental illness, bipolar disorder, psychosis, or suicidal thoughts or actions;

  • problems with drug or alcohol abuse;

  • motor tics (muscle twitches) or Tourette's syndrome;

  • kidney disease;

  • a thyroid disorder;

  • seizures or epilepsy;

  • an abnormal brain wave test (EEG);

  • coronary artery disease (clogged arteries); or

  • blood circulation problems in the hands or feet.

It is not known whether amphetamine will harm an unborn baby. However, taking the medicine during pregnancy can cause premature birth, low birth weight, or withdrawal symptoms in the newborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant.

Amphetamine can pass into breast milk and may harm a nursing baby. Tell your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.

Amphetamine is not approved for use by anyone younger than 6 years old.

How should I take amphetamine?

Using amphetamine improperly can cause death or serious side effects on the heart.

Follow all directions on your prescription label. Your doctor may occasionally change your dose. Do not use this medicine in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended.

This medicine may be habit-forming. Never share amphetamine with another person, especially someone with a history of drug abuse or addiction. Keep the medication in a place where others cannot get to it. Selling or giving away this medicine is against the law.

Take amphetamine with or without food, first thing in the morning.

Read all patient information, medication guides, and instruction sheets provided to you. Ask your doctor or pharmacist if you have any questions.

If your doctor changes your brand, strength, or type of stimulant medicine, your dosage needs may change. Use only the brand of this medicine your doctor has prescribed.

Shake the oral suspension (liquid) well just before you measure a dose. Measure liquid medicine with the dosing syringe provided, or with a special dose-measuring spoon or medicine cup. If you do not have a dose-measuring device, ask your pharmacist for one.

To take the orally disintegrating tablet (Adzenys XR-ODT):

  • Keep the tablet in its blister pack until you are ready to take it. Open the package and peel back the foil. Do not push a tablet through the foil or you may damage the tablet.

  • Use dry hands to remove the tablet and place it in your mouth.

  • Do not swallow the tablet whole. Allow it to dissolve in your mouth without chewing. If desired, you may drink liquid to help swallow the dissolved tablet.

While using amphetamine, your doctor will need to check your progress at regular visits. Tell any doctor who treats you that you are using this medicine.

Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat. Keep the bottle tightly closed when not in use.

Keep track of your medicine. Amphetamine is a drug of abuse and you should be aware if anyone is using your medicine improperly or without a prescription.

See also: Dosage Information (in more detail)

What happens if I miss a dose?

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember, but not late in the day. Skip the missed dose if it is almost evening. Do not take extra medicine to make up the missed dose.

What happens if I overdose?

Seek emergency medical attention or call the Poison Help line at 1-800-222-1222. An overdose of amphetamine could be fatal.

Overdose symptoms may include restlessness, tremor, muscle twitches, rapid breathing, hostility, violence, panic, muscle pain or weakness, and dark colored urine. These symptoms may be followed by depression and tiredness. Overdose may also cause seizure or coma.

What should I avoid while taking amphetamine?

Avoid drinking alcohol while you are taking this medicine.

Avoid drinking fruit juices or taking vitamin C at the same time you take amphetamine. These can make your body absorb less of the medicine.

Amphetamine may impair your thinking or reactions. Be careful if you drive or do anything that requires you to be alert.

Amphetamine side effects

Get emergency medical help if you have signs of an allergic reaction to amphetamine: hives; difficult breathing; swelling of your face, lips, tongue, or throat.

Call your doctor at once if you have:

  • signs of heart problems - chest pain, trouble breathing, feeling like you might pass out;

  • signs of psychosis - hallucinations (seeing or hearing things that are not real), new behavior problems, aggression, hostility, paranoia;

  • signs of circulation problems - numbness, pain, cold feeling, unexplained wounds, or skin color changes (pale, red, or blue appearance) in your fingers or toes;

  • a seizure (convulsions);

  • muscle twitches (tics); or

  • changes in your vision.

Seek medical attention right away if you have symptoms of serotonin syndrome, such as: agitation, hallucinations, fever, sweating, shivering, fast heart rate, muscle stiffness, twitching, loss of coordination, nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea.

Amphetamine can affect growth in children. Tell your doctor if your child is not growing at a normal rate while using this medicine.

Common amphetamine side effects may include:

  • stomach pain, nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, constipation;

  • loss of appetite, weight loss;

  • mood changes, feeling restless or nervous, sleep problems (insomnia);

  • dry mouth, unusual or unpleasant taste in the mouth;

  • runny nose, nosebleeds;

  • increased heart rate;

  • headache, dizziness;

  • itching; or

  • impotence, sexual problems.

This is not a complete list of side effects and others may occur. Call your doctor for medical advice about side effects. You may report side effects to FDA at 1-800-FDA-1088.

See also: Side effects (in more detail)

Amphetamine dosing information

Usual Adult Dose of Amphetamine for Narcolepsy:

IMMEDIATE-RELEASE ORAL TABLET:
-Initial Dose: 10 mg orally per day in divided doses
-Maintenance Dose: Daily dose may be raised in 10 mg increments at weekly intervals until optimal response is obtained.

Comments:
-The first dose should be given on awakening; additional doses should be given at intervals of 4 to 6 hours.
-The usual dose is 5 to 60 mg per day in divided doses depending on the individual patient response.
-Reduce dosage if bothersome adverse reactions (e.g., insomnia, anorexia) appear.

Use: Narcolepsy treatment

Usual Adult Dose of Amphetamine for Obesity:

IMMEDIATE-RELEASE ORAL TABLET:
-Initial Dose: 5 mg orally 30 to 60 minutes before each meal
-Maximum Dose: 30 mg orally per day in divided doses
-Duration of Therapy: Should not exceed a few weeks

Use: Short-term adjunct in a weight reduction regimen based on caloric restriction; for patients in whom obesity is refractory to alternative therapy (e.g., repeated diets, group programs, other drugs).

Usual Pediatric Dose of Amphetamine for Narcolepsy:

IMMEDIATE-RELEASE ORAL TABLET:
Age 6 to 11 Years:
-Initial Dose: 5 mg orally per day in divided doses
-Maintenance Dose: Daily dose may be raised in 5 mg increments at weekly intervals until optimal response is obtained.

Age 12 Years and Older:
-Initial Dose: 10 mg orally per day in divided doses
-Maintenance Dose: Daily dose may be raised in 10 mg increments at weekly intervals until optimal response is obtained.

Comments:
-The first dose should be given on awakening; additional doses should be given at intervals of 4 to 6 hours.
-The usual dose is 5 to 60 mg per day in divided doses depending on the individual patient response.
-Reduce dosage if bothersome adverse reactions (e.g., insomnia, anorexia) appear.
-Narcolepsy rarely occurs in children under 12 years of age.

Use: Narcolepsy treatment

Usual Pediatric Dose of Amphetamine for Obesity:

IMMEDIATE-RELEASE ORAL TABLET:
Age 12 Years and Older:
-Initial Dose: 5 mg orally 30 to 60 minutes before each meal
-Maximum Dose: 30 mg orally per day in divided doses
-Duration of Therapy: Should not exceed a few weeks

Use: Short-term adjunct in a weight reduction regimen based on caloric restriction; for patients in whom obesity is refractory to alternative therapy (e.g., repeated diets, group programs, other drugs).

Usual Pediatric Dose of Amphetamine for Attention Deficit Disorder:

IMMEDIATE-RELEASE ORAL TABLETS:
Age 3 to 5 Years:
-Initial Dose: 2.5 mg orally per day
-Maintenance Dose: Daily dose may be raised in 2.5 mg increments at weekly intervals until optimal response is obtained.

Age 6 to 17 Years:
-Initial Dose: 5 mg orally 1 or 2 times a day
-Maintenance Dose: Daily dose may be raised in 5 mg increments at weekly intervals until optimal response is obtained.
-Maximum Dose: Only in rare cases will it be necessary to exceed 40 mg per day.

EXTENDED-RELEASE ORAL SUSPENSION:
Age 6 to 17 Years:
-Initial Dose: 2.5 or 5 mg orally once a day in the morning
-Maintenance Dose: Dose may be raised in increments of 2.5 to 10 mg per day every 4 to 7 days until optimal response is obtained.
-Maximum Dose: 20 mg orally per day

Comments:
-IMMEDIATE-RELEASE: The first dose should be given on awakening; 1 to 2 additional doses should be given at intervals of 4 to 6 hours.
-EXTENDED-RELEASE: When switching from other amphetamine products, this product should be titrated using the usual dosing schedule after the other amphetamine product is discontinued.
-EXTENDED-RELEASE: Substituting this product for other amphetamine products should not be done because of different amphetamine base compositions and differing pharmacokinetic profiles.
-EXTENDED-RELEASE: The bottle should be shaken before each dose, and an oral dosing syringe or other suitable measuring device should be used.

Use: As part of a total treatment program for Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), a behavioral syndrome characterized by moderate to severe distractibility, short attention span, hyperactivity, emotional lability, and impulsivity.

What other drugs will affect amphetamine?

Ask your doctor before using a stomach acid medicine (including Alka-Seltzer or sodium bicarbonate). Some of these medicines can change the way your body absorbs amphetamine, and may increase side effects.

Many drugs can interact with amphetamine. This includes prescription and over-the-counter medicines, vitamins, and herbal products. Not all possible interactions are listed in this medication guide. Tell your doctor about all your current medicines and any medicine you start or stop using.

Where can I get more information?

  • Your pharmacist can provide more information about amphetamine.
  • Remember, keep this and all other medicines out of the reach of children, never share your medicines with others, and use amphetamine only for the indication prescribed.
  • Disclaimer: Every effort has been made to ensure that the information provided by Cerner Multum, Inc. ('Multum') is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. Drug information contained herein may be time sensitive. Multum information has been compiled for use by healthcare practitioners and consumers in the United States and therefore Multum does not warrant that uses outside of the United States are appropriate, unless specifically indicated otherwise. Multum's drug information does not endorse drugs, diagnose patients or recommend therapy. Multum's drug information is an informational resource designed to assist licensed healthcare practitioners in caring for their patients and/or to serve consumers viewing this service as a supplement to, and not a substitute for, the expertise, skill, knowledge and judgment of healthcare practitioners. The absence of a warning for a given drug or drug combination in no way should be construed to indicate that the drug or drug combination is safe, effective or appropriate for any given patient. Multum does not assume any responsibility for any aspect of healthcare administered with the aid of information Multum provides. The information contained herein is not intended to cover all possible uses, directions, precautions, warnings, drug interactions, allergic reactions, or adverse effects. If you have questions about the drugs you are taking, check with your doctor, nurse or pharmacist.

Copyright 1996-2017 Cerner Multum, Inc. Version: 2.02.

Last reviewed: July 10, 2017
Date modified: August 12, 2017

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