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Adderrall:Is it Worth the Risk?

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It’s a scary a thing. Why all of a sudden are more and more of our children being diagnosed daily with attention deficit disorder and hyperactivity and being prescribed so called “cure-all” drugs. A staggering 29 million prescriptions were written in 2004 for stimulant drugs such Adderall, Ritalin and other similar drugs to treat this so called epidemic disease, most of them for children. Two weeks ago, according to reports sent to federal drug regulators, 25 people suddenly died and 54 others suffered serious unexplained heart problems while taking stimulant like drugs over a four year period.

This report should cause red flags to be raised and alarms to sound. Since these types of drugs are among the most widely prescribed medicines in the world, and the fact is that most of these drugs are ingested by children, we better start paying close attention to what is going on. Of the 24 reported deaths, 19 were children! The report stated:

The rare occurrence of pediatric sudden death during stimulant therapy of A.D.H.D. is an issue that warrants close monitoring.

A committee from the FDA is supposedly meeting to discuss the ramifications of the report and make recommendations as to whether further research needs to be undertaken to see if drugs are really to blame for the these sudden, unexpected deaths.

In Canada, officials suspended the sale of a long acting hyperactivity drug called Adderall XR after a reports of 20 sudden deaths were linked to the drug, 12 among children. However, after the studying the issue for only 7 months, sales of the drug resumed.

And there have been many studies. As a matter of fact, I suspect that there have been dozens of studies of controlled studies to determine if there is any correlation between the drugs and heart problems. Yet, I wonder who has studied and funded these studies? I wonder how long these studies lasted. I wonder how many patients were included in each of these studies. Again, I suspect that these studies do not include enough patients, do last long enough and are paid for and funded by the drug companies who profit the most from the continued sale of these drugs.

Let’s get real. Our children are no more active than they we were 10, 20 or 30 years ago. Our children are no more “attention deficit disorders” than we do. (I mean no disrespect to those that do suffer from ADHD as there are those that really do benefit from this therapy).

There are too many pill doctors who write “scripts” for a hundred dollars for a five minute visit with no real diagnosis. There are too many teenage girls who have figured out that Adderall is the greatest diet drug on the planet. There are too many teenage boys who have figured that Ritalin is better than speed. And there are too many stupid parents that just don’t ask the right questions and keep taking their kids to the doctor for all the wrong reasons.

These drugs increase blood pressure, heart rates and have been known to increase the risk of cardiovascular problems. So, why don’t the prescribing doctors and parents weigh the risks of stimulant use to whether the drug is really needed in the first place?