National Adderall Shortage Leaves Patients Uncertain

99 Pages-

99 Pages-

Kate Rogers, Opinions Editor

On October 12, 2022, the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced a nationwide shortage of the prescription drug: Adderall. Amphetamine mixed salts, like Adderall and Adderall IR (immediate release), are prescription stimulant drugs used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and narcolepsy. Adderall is a Schedule II controlled substance, meaning it has a high potential for abuse which could lead to severe psychological or physical dependence, so the FDA closely monitors its production. According to the FDA’s website, “FDA is in frequent communication with all manufacturers of amphetamine mixed salts, and one of those companies, Teva, is experiencing ongoing intermittent manufacturing delays. Other manufacturers continue to produce amphetamine mixed salts, but there is not sufficient supply to continue to meet US market demand through those producers.”

The sudden shortage may lead to an increase in impulsivity and unreliability among workers, inattentive students, and erratic behavior at home. According to CNN, prescription users are being told to wait approximately two weeks, some even being told up to a month before they can get a refill. Some have taken to rationing pills, such as 22 year old Mikey DeDona. His medication is saved for days absolutely necessary rather than regularly. DeDona receives doses for his type 1 narcolepsy, but is now running off of irregular naps and migraines throughout the day.

Due to dire circumstances, some users have turned to unconventional suppliers such as dealers or social media. The Department of Justice reports in October, they charged 23 people with trafficking counterfeit pills after seizing over 74,000 counterfeit pills – including counterfeit Adderall laced with methamphetamine.

With no safe alternatives, users face more difficulties with everyday life than usual, and the FDA’s uncertainty as to whether or not they will have any refills before the end of this year hangs looming concerns across all age groups.