ADHD Treatment Drug Shortages Continue as Studies Point to Rising Prescriptions – Maryland Matters

Federal drug agencies and drug companies continue to report a shortage of common medications used to treat symptoms of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. photo by Alex DiStasi.

Federal drug agencies and pharmaceutical companies continue to report a shortage of common drugs used to treat symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), even as recent studies show an increase in patients needing such drugs.

ADHD is a mental health condition that includes a combination of symptoms, including difficulty paying attention, impulsive behavior and hyperactivity, and can occur in childhood and continue into adulthood, according to the Mayo Clinic.

By the fall of 2022 people started noticing a shortage of Adderall, one of the best-known drugs for treating ADHD symptoms, according to Dr. David W. Goodman, assistant professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at the Johns Hopkins School of Medicine. Goodman is also the director of the Adult Attention Deficit Disorder Center of Maryland.

As we moved into late September and early fall, it became absolutely clear that this was a problem, that patients were having difficulty getting their medications, he said, noting that the problem seems to have peaked. in the winter of 2022.

State agencies that monitor the supply of prescription drugs had noticed a similar trend, according to Chase Cook, acting director of communications for the Maryland Department of Health.

The Maryland Prescription Drug Monitoring Program has internally tracked the increase in stimulant prescribing from 2018 to the present. There was a notable increase from 2020 to 2022 in the number of stimulant prescriptions, Cook said in a written statement. Additionally, she said the state Department of Health had received an alert from federal agencies warning of the supply concern.

In October, the Food and Drug Administration issued a shortage alert for the immediate-release formulation of mixed salts of amphetamines, commonly referred to by the brand name Adderall or Adderall IR.

Those with ADHD often use prescription drugs to manage their symptoms, often in the form of prescribed stimulants like amphetamines (Adderall) and methylphenidate (Ritalin and Concerta), according to the National Institute of Drug Abuse.

When patients lost access to Adderall, they resorted to other drugs to fill that vacancy, Goodman noted, contributing to greater demand for other brands and drugs.

Now, several pharmaceutical companies are reporting that various forms of stimulants are either in limited availability or unavailable, according to the FDA’s drug shortage list.

This could be a problem because ADHD patients who do not take their medications can see negative impacts in their personal lives.

If you don’t take the drug after taking it, you will notice that your distractibility is worse. Procrastination is worse. Productivity is worse, Dr. Goodman said.

These struggles can negatively affect their work and home life as well, she added.

In that situation, people may have left bad impressions about their work because they weren’t finishing the job. They weren’t running out in time. They have lost their jobs. They showed up late, Goodman said. Or if you’re married and have a family, you can’t execute consistently, you can’t carry through. Create conflicts between you and your partner.

According to Dr. Goodman, his office has recently received fewer calls from people reporting they can’t get their ADHD medications, telling him that people in Maryland have easier access to those medications than they did a few months ago. .

But just last week, the FDA reported a continuing shortage of stimulant drugs. Some pharmaceutical companies, such as Alvogen, report they expect their supplies to improve as early as mid-July. Others, like Uspharma Windlas and Aurobindo Pharma USA, say it will take until August or December.

Teva Pharmaceuticals, which makes Adderall, reports that some of their supply is limited due to additional demand for the drug and it’s unclear when the situation will improve.

Teva is producing and distributing in line with historical levels. We continue to see unprecedented demand, Teva told the FDA regarding their shortage.

A March report from the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report indicates that in the early years of the COVID pandemic, prescriptions for stimulants increased among females ages 15-44 and males ages 25-44. over 10% during 2020 through 2021.

The report finds that, overall, the percentage of enrollees who had prescriptions for stimulants and were in employer-sponsored health plans increased from 3.6 percent in 2016 to 4.1 percent in 2021.

Goodman said there are several reasons why the pandemic appears to have led to an increase in people diagnosed with ADHD.

While people were at home, they lost the facility to go to work. And that then left them with the responsibility of building one structure a day. ADHD individuals have particular difficulty doing this, and so without structure, their productivity is reduced, he said.

She also noted that families and parents may have noticed that their child has struggled to stay focused on school work while working remotely, prompting them to seek an ADHD assessment.

The CDC report notes that the pandemic has impacted mental health, potentially exacerbating ADHD symptoms.

The prevalence of diagnosed ADHD and associated treatment in adults has increased in recent decades, according to the report. The current study adds to evidence that the upward trend in the proportion of adults receiving stimulant prescriptions continued during the COVID-19 pandemic, with a notable recovery during 20202021. The pandemic has had negative impacts on mental health that may have led to or exacerbated ADHD symptoms.

#ADHD #Treatment #Drug #Shortages #Continue #Studies #Point #Rising #Prescriptions #Maryland #Matters
Image Source :

Leave a Comment