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What Factors Affect Dexedrine® Dosage?

By Madeleine A.
Updated May 17, 2024
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Factors that affect proper Dexedrine® dosage include the condition the drug is used to treat, a patient's age, his current medical conditions, and what other medicines he is taking. Dexedrine&reg is a prescription medication used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and narcolepsy, a condition characterized by daytime sleeping attacks. Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder is a condition where the individual has trouble sitting still, paying attention, and controlling his behavior.

The standard Dexedrine® dosage is 2.5 mg to 5 mg daily and may increase to 40 mg daily. Regardless of which dose is being taken, this medication should be taken every morning at the same time. This ensures the bloodstream has stable amounts of the medication in it at all times. When the bloodstream consistently receives a continuous amount of medication, symptoms are managed more effectively.

Even at a standard Dexedrine® dosage, side effects may occur with this medication. Although most people tolerate Dexedrine&reg well, others may experience significant side effects. These include over stimulation, loss of appetite, diarrhea, and dizziness. In addition, weight loss, constipation, and dry mouth can occur in some people. A rare side effect of Dexedrine&reg is a temporary slowed growth rate in children, though children generally catch up to their peers over time.

At any Dexedrine® dosage, rare but sometimes serious side effects can occur, including shortness of breath, chest pain, and cardiac arrhythmia. These side effects may require emergency medical attention to avoid serious complications. Other serious side effects may include fainting, seizures, agitation, and visual disturbances. Anaphylactic reaction may also occur and can cause hives, wheezing, swelling, and trouble breathing. This is also an emergency situation that requires immediate attention.

This medication may not be suitable for women who are pregnant, even at a low Dexedrine® dosage. Dexedrine&reg is a Category C medication, which means it has the potential to cause harm to an unborn baby. In addition, this medication has be known to cause miscarriages and birth defects in mice. If, however, the healthcare provider believes the benefits outweigh the risks for a pregnant woman, he may consider prescribing it.

Certain people cannot tolerate even the smallest Dexedrine® dosage. For these people, a doctor may recommend an alternative medication or treatment. It is important to note, however, that even if side effects are intolerable, the patient should never discontinue treatment without first consulting the doctor. Abruptly discontinuing prescription medications may cause serious adverse reactions including, but not limited to, abnormal heart rate, seizures, and worsening of the condition.

WiseGeek is dedicated to providing accurate and trustworthy information. We carefully select reputable sources and employ a rigorous fact-checking process to maintain the highest standards. To learn more about our commitment to accuracy, read our editorial process.

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