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ADHD medicine to treat nerve pain?

Has anybody heard of using medicine for ADHD to help with pain? I have a friend and her doctor prescribed it and said you will know right away within twenty minutes whether it will help with pain. She said she took it and felt great! She was almost bed ridden with pain before that. Very interesting!!! Anybody else take it or heard of it?


  • Which ADHD medication was she prescribed? Most are a form of amphetamine salts, but there are exceptions.
    Several Epidurals, L4-S1 360 ALIF, Numerous Facet Joint Injections, RFA x2
  • I was going to ask the same thing, what ADHD meds was she prescribed?

    For my MH issues I have Lexapro and Dexamphetamine - at this stage because I am on fentanyl and valium for my back I'm not sure if it has had an impact but my fentanyl is about to be replaced with morphine to be weened off opiates so time will tell weather the dex has an impact. I know I have a more energy and can concentrate more though.
    L3/4 - disc bulge
    L4/5 - dis herniation encroaching spinal theca & L5 nerve root in canal
    Lf/S1- Posterior osteophyte lipping between vertebral bodies. Disc herniation encroaching spinal theca & L5 root nerve
    **full description in my info**
  • I have read that stimulants such amphetamines and methylphenidate can be helpful in reducing pain when taken along with opioids, in addition to reducing the lethargy associated with opioid use, but I would be surprised if see them prescribed to chronic pain patients, especially given the current climate in which doctors are overly fearful of addiction. I have only ever heard of their use in the occasional case of severe pain in the terminally ill.

    In Britain, there used to be a thing called Brompton cocktail. It was given to patients near the end of life and consisted of a mixture of either morphine or diamorphine, cocaine and alcohol.
  • I recently started taking adderall for ADHD, but found it helps with my pain more than the ADHD!!!!!!! Never thought that would happen but I'll take it!
    ACDF C4-5 June 23rd, 2011

    Another surgery in the near future. I am 26 years old.

    Current Meds- Norco 7.5/325, Cymbalta 60mg, Gabapentin, Adderall 20mg
  • ProteeninjectorPProteeninjector Posts: 7
    edited 01/04/2013 - 9:15 PM
    Sorry it took so long to respond everybody. Your insights are very helpful. She is taking Vyvanse 20mg(I believe). I was tempted to try a couple to see, she offered me a couple but I am Leary of taking someone else's meds, ya know?
    Donnabe, that is very interesting. I would love to talk to my doc about it but I am disabled vet and they are very strict on use of meds Ina way not approved by FDA. I asked about addiction and she said no more that narcotics, as long as you are actually taking it for pain, just like narcotics, you will not abuse it. I would give anything to be able to play with my son for more than 5 minutes without regretting it for the next 5 days.
    New MRI showed I have bone spurs growing in c2-c3 region which is closing my foraminal holes...awesome! Just more to add to the list. Lol. I always try to stay positive and not feel sorry for myself. Thanks guys! Hope my additional info about the medicine and dosage is helpful for anyone.
  • Don't ask for it for pain... Ask for it for add.
    ACDF C4-5 June 23rd, 2011

    Another surgery in the near future. I am 26 years old.

    Current Meds- Norco 7.5/325, Cymbalta 60mg, Gabapentin, Adderall 20mg
  • I was taking Adderol because after a long depression that I felt was over I would still just sit and do nothing. The Adderol made me feel like my normal energenic self. I later deleveloped problems with my L4-5, etc. Of course my family thought the Adderal was unhealthy and I hate pills. I stopped taking it and my back pain got worse. I am possitive of this. I tested it over and over.
    These drugs are regulated and sometimes hard to get. If your Dr. is willing to perscribe it you should try it. Start with a small does as you will find they make you sort of nervous--the good news is you will clean all the closets and organize everything.
    Suzan, hoping to ski again one day
  • It will make you clean closets and organize everything ? I need some for my gf then, Do they sell it by a case ?
    Flexicore ADR 2004 resulting nerve damage l4l5 Fusion 2006 same level, 2009 hardware removal with lami !
    2012 scs implant ,
  • I kept this post as lay as I could, but I apologize if I confuse anyone in advance lol.

    I wouldn't be surprised if the analgesia produced from amphetamine preparations (Dexedrine, Adderall, Vyvanse (dextroamphetamine coupled with L-Lysine to make it slowly become active in your blood) are mediated by their action on norepinephrine (non-US: noradrenaline) as it reduces your sensitivity to pain. Amphetamines flood you with dopamine, serotonin (both of which could boost mood resulting in decreased pain as well), and norepinephrine.

    I recently started taking Vyvanse recently, and while I did note a little less pain, in my case, I think it's just that I can focus on things now. I can focus on whatever it is I need to do as opposed to nothing which leads focus to pain. I've always had ADHD, just didn't see the need to treat it until college when school actually became a challenge.

    In a pharmacological sense, it does make since that they would help with pain. They now prescribe antidepressant's of the SSRI, SNRI, and SNDRI (eg. Zoloft, Prozac | Cymbalta | and Effexor, respectively) type to chronic pain patients as an adjunctive treatment.
    I am not a medical professional, and everything that I say should be taken with a grain of salt. No diagnoses or truely medical opinions can be drawn with out a physical, face-to-face doctor visit.
  • jeannephiljjeannephil Posts: 1
    edited 05/18/2015 - 10:42 AM
    Donnabe said:
    I recently started taking adderall for ADHD, but found it helps with my pain more than the ADHD!!!!!!! Never thought that would happen but I'll take it!
    I was diagnosed a little late for ADD. I am 55 years old and have two bulging discs. I have also had both hips replaced. The back problem makes my legs feel as if they are going to blow up. I have stopped taking the other pain meds the osteo doc gave me because they make me lethargic and loopy. On my own, I found that simple aspirin does a much better job.

    Through my son's ADHD therapist, I was told I may have ADHD myself. I was tested and was soon on Adderall 20 mg. The Adderall is working very well for the ADD symptoms. But, I was also immediately surprised at how little pain I felt. I was able to move about, quickly no doubt, without all the grunting, groaning, and complaining that I usually do.

    I am really interested in the chemistry of this "side effect." I understand that caffeine is used in a lot of OTC meds, especially pain meds, ex.: BC powders, Exedrine, and many others. If I remember correctly, the caffeine is used partly as a delivery mechanism. Also, I believe, caffeine has some of its own analgesic properties. I am very interested in finding more information and will continue to search.

    By the way, my family doctor, who prescribes the Adderall, was very surprised at the pain relief. He acted a little skeptical. I think the world of my family doc. He has helped me tremendously over the years. But, I would love to bring him some hard proof that there is something to the pain relief associated with Adderall.
  • I am 58, High Functioning severe ADHD, and offer a somewhat different perspective on pain.  I was unmedicated until age 47 when bilateral carpal-tunnel pain raised my adrenaline to the point that I could no longer 'hyper-focus'  the pain away - something they tell me I had been doing for possibly 25 years.  Most of the pain we feel is perceived pain, that is it is as severe as our brain interprets it to be.  Pain produces adrenaline which inhibits /  interferes with norepenephrine - the principle conductive material in our nervous system.  This, in essence, can cause a 'cascade' affect by which we perceive more pain than what actually exists - just as seeing an injury (or an inoculation being administered) can do the same.

    Hyper-focusing is something ADD and ADHD people often do  without thought, where they 'shut off'' a number of senses to concentrate on a single thing.  Some of us can 'shut out' pain as merely a perception, up until the point that the pain literally 'screams' at us.  For me, in the beginning, Straterra (a non-narcotic norepenephrine uptake inhibitor) helped considerably (until the 'screams' came').  I am currently going through some as yet undiagnosed nerve pain,  and again, the Strattera helped initially,  Recently, I have again had to move to Adderol, but so far, I have not required further pain medication.  For what its worth . . . .
  • LizLiz Posts: 7,832
    Hello Tubularengineer

    This is a very old discussion created by a member that hasn't been  on the forum for a long time so I am closing it.

    With help from  the link below you can search for articles on this subject or I suggest you create a new discussion using the link below

    Liz, Spine-health Moderator

    Spinal stenosis since 1995
    Lumber decompression surgery S1 L5-L3[1996]
    Cervical stenosis, so far avoided surgery
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