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  #1  
Old 05-21-12, 09:57 PM
Crystalline Crystalline is offline
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Blood pressure on Adderall (Wellbutrin as alternative?)

So I've been on Adderall XR since.... January of 2010. Overall it works quite nicely for me. I take a relatively high dose of 50 mg per day (two 25mg capsules). Previously I had been taking Ritalin (short acting) and at first it worked really well but then I started feeling anxious like crazy and was extremely extremely irritable so my psychiatrist switched me over to Adderall. Tried lower dosages but 50 was the lowest that actually worked.

Anywho. I'm in college now and only see my psychiatrist when I come home during breaks. I last saw her about 6 months ago or so during my Christmas break and when she took my blood pressure, it was a little high. I don't recall the exact numbers. She had me not take any adderall the next day and go to the doctors to get it taken again to see if there was a noticeable difference and when I went, my blood pressure was average. The next day I took my adderall and had my BP checked again and it was high.

So obviously the adderall is playing a role (no surprise).

Now it's 6 months later and I had another appointment with my psychiatrist. This time we talked about alternative medications. I tried Concerta for a week but that was no good. It affected me the same way that Ritalin did (anxious, irritable etc.) not to mention my BP was slightly higher than on adderall. During my 2nd appointment (today) we talked about non stimulant medications like Wellbutrin (which I just picked up) since all stimulant medications seem to be raising my BP. I have yet to see if Wellbutrin will make any difference and I hear it takes a few weeks to tell. But after reading some forum posts, I'm not feeling too optimistic about it.

My question is this. After I give Wellbutrin a try, if it doesn't work, how dangerous would it be for me to continue taking Adderall? The only BP reading I remember is 123 over 90. This was my BP on Adderall. On Concerta it was 128 over 97. It seems like 123 over 90 is just barely higher than average. Shouldn't that be okay? Isn't it borderline? Would it really be so horrible for me to keep using Adderall?
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Old 05-21-12, 11:14 PM
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Re: Blood pressure on Adderall (Wellbutrin as alternative?)

There are other ways to improve your blood pressure, do some googling or talk to your doctor.

My BP was high before I even started Adderall but it hasn't really changed as a result of taking it. Plenty of exercise will decrease your BP. Exercise will also reduce the amount of Adderall that you need to take which will further reduce your BP. If you aren't already exercising at least 30 min most days, then you have your answer. If you do exercise regularly, then look at your diet for where you can improve.

The 123 - 128 is normal. It's the 90+ that is a concern. 90 is high. 97 is OMFG high. You definitely need to avoid the adderall if you can't keep it closer to 90 (or preferably less).
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Old 05-21-12, 11:39 PM
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Re: Blood pressure on Adderall (Wellbutrin as alternative?)

Wellbutrin (which I took for several years, 300mg XL) made the Adderall inactive in my system - completely. No effect. My understanding (after tons of personal research) is that this is common.

Normal blood pressure is 125/75... mine usually hovers around 140/85 (this is with blood pressure meds, Norvasc 10mg daily). It was this way prior to taking Adderall, though, so for me the Adderall has not had a negative effect on my blood pressure - I'm taking a much lower dose than you are, however. Wellbutrin also elevates blood pressure, and it may not work as well as the Adderall for focus, etc.
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Old 05-22-12, 07:22 PM
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Re: Blood pressure on Adderall (Wellbutrin as alternative?)

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Originally Posted by Drewbacca View Post
There are other ways to improve your blood pressure, do some googling or talk to your doctor.

My BP was high before I even started Adderall but it hasn't really changed as a result of taking it. Plenty of exercise will decrease your BP. Exercise will also reduce the amount of Adderall that you need to take which will further reduce your BP. If you aren't already exercising at least 30 min most days, then you have your answer. If you do exercise regularly, then look at your diet for where you can improve.

The 123 - 128 is normal. It's the 90+ that is a concern. 90 is high. 97 is OMFG high. You definitely need to avoid the adderall if you can't keep it closer to 90 (or preferably less).
I asked my psychiatrist about the exercise idea and she said it wouldn't help at all since my BP is normal when I'm not on anything and so since a lack of exercise isn't causing it, exercise isn't the solution either. Then again I'm not sure how I feel about that :-/

And in response to kali_shey (I don't suppose your username has anything to do with Uglies? ) Yeah I'm really not feeling too optimistic about Wellbutrin with everything I've read. If Adderall already works really well for me and at such a high dose, I don't see why Wellbutrin would do much for me.

I'm almost even considering holding off on taking the Wellbutrin altogether and going back to Adderall but exercise more to see if that helps at all. But I wonder if I should try to get a hold of my psychiatrist first and ask her opinion...
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Old 05-22-12, 08:54 PM
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Re: Blood pressure on Adderall (Wellbutrin as alternative?)

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Originally Posted by Crystalline View Post
I asked my psychiatrist about the exercise idea and she said it wouldn't help at all since my BP is normal when I'm not on anything and so since a lack of exercise isn't causing it, exercise isn't the solution either. Then again I'm not sure how I feel about that :-/
Aerobic exercise done in the morning and before you take the meds will have, over the long-haul, the effect of increasing end diastolic volume, lowering resting heart rate, and will result in a decrease in your baseline (esp. systolic) blood pressure.
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Old 05-22-12, 09:18 PM
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Re: Blood pressure on Adderall (Wellbutrin as alternative?)

Hey sweety, there are some people that take a med to combat the high bp alongside meds also worthwhile looking at diet and exercise..I have a high average bp on meds its because I'm a smoker too though its within safe paramaters
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Old 05-23-12, 01:33 PM
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Re: Blood pressure on Adderall (Wellbutrin as alternative?)

What about taking adderall AND Wellbutrin? and exercising more? Haha could that work do you think? I'm not sure the wellbutrin by itself will help enough.
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Old 05-23-12, 03:38 PM
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Re: Blood pressure on Adderall (Wellbutrin as alternative?)

What about a lower dose of adderall? maybe 50mg was to high?
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Old 05-23-12, 03:56 PM
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Re: Blood pressure on Adderall (Wellbutrin as alternative?)

This is possible but wouldn't I have realized that 50 was too high at some point during the past two years I've been taking it?
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Old 05-23-12, 04:55 PM
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Re: Blood pressure on Adderall (Wellbutrin as alternative?)

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This is possible but wouldn't I have realized that 50 was too high at some point during the past two years I've been taking it?
oooohhh I missed that point. Well maybe its possible that your body changed?
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Old 05-23-12, 07:06 PM
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Re: Blood pressure on Adderall (Wellbutrin as alternative?)

Hahaha this is true! I suppose it wouldn't hurt to try
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Old 05-23-12, 07:17 PM
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Re: Blood pressure on Adderall (Wellbutrin as alternative?)

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Originally Posted by ceebee View Post
Aerobic exercise done in the morning and before you take the meds will have, over the long-haul, the effect of increasing end diastolic volume, lowering resting heart rate, and will result in a decrease in your baseline (esp. systolic) blood pressure.
I get why you'd want to exercise before taking the meds, but is there a reason why you say in the morning? I'm pretty dysfunctional in the morning and tend to exercise a few hours before bed. Just curious about your reasoning.
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Old 05-23-12, 08:37 PM
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Re: Blood pressure on Adderall (Wellbutrin as alternative?)

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Originally Posted by Drewbacca View Post
I get why you'd want to exercise before taking the meds, but is there a reason why you say in the morning? I'm pretty dysfunctional in the morning and tend to exercise a few hours before bed. Just curious about your reasoning.
Better to do it in the morning so you don't screw up your sleep architecture and can supplement your medication with endorphins
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Old 05-24-12, 09:12 AM
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Re: Blood pressure on Adderall (Wellbutrin as alternative?)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Crystalline View Post
My question is this. After I give Wellbutrin a try, if it doesn't work, how dangerous would it be for me to continue taking Adderall? The only BP reading I remember is 123 over 90. This was my BP on Adderall. On Concerta it was 128 over 97. It seems like 123 over 90 is just barely higher than average. Shouldn't that be okay? Isn't it borderline? Would it really be so horrible for me to keep using Adderall?
sounds like your are vasoconstricting due to peripgheral NE effects of Adderall, which is totally normal response to be honest. Maybe a dex only variant like Vyvanse or Dexedrine might help? it might contribute to less NE stimulation.
regardless I would have an EKG done to rule out any underlying heart condition, something you should have done regularly anyways....specially if on stimulants, my pdoc demands one yearly, also a standard blood test to check RBC count/size/platelets, sodium retention, since you could have some predesposition to HBP to begin with unrelated to the adderall

does your BP also raise with something like coffee or an energy drink?
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