Dexedrine vs. Kapvay

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

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Helps you stay awake and focus. Dexedrine (Dextroamphetamine) is an effective and cheap medication used to treat ADHD, but it can be habit-forming and is not used for long-term treatment.Treats ADHD and lowers blood pressure. Clonidine is a non-stimulant option to manage ADHD symptoms and behaviors, but it can lower your blood pressure.
How it works
Dexedrine (Dextroamphetamine) is a stimulant. It treats narcolepsy and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) by increasing norepinephrine and dopamine activity in the brain.Clonidine is an alpha-2 agonist. Researchers don't know exactly how it works for ADHD. It works in the brain and lowers the activity of certain stress hormones, but it's not a stimulant like many ADHD medicines.
Type of medication
StimulantPrescription only
Alpha agonist
Prescription only
Available as
  • Pill
  • Extended release
  • Liquid
  • Extended release
Used for (click to learn more)
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Reviews & ratings
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Reviews for Dexedrine (Dextroamphetamine)
of people say Dexedrine (Dextroamphetamine) is worth it
say it works well
say it's a big hassle
Side effects

We haven’t found good data for Dexedrine side effects.

FDA side effect reports for Dexedrine »
  • Drowsiness 34%
  • Any side effect 19%
  • Fatigue 15%
  • Irritability 5%
  • Sleep difficulty 5%
  • Headache 4%
  • Dry mouth 4%
  • Upper abdominal pain 3%
  • Emotional disorder 3%
  • Dizziness 2%
More Kapvay side effects »
Risk factors for serious side effects
  • History of heart problems
  • History of drug abuse
  • History of psychotic episodes
  • History of bipolar disorder
  • Children
  • History of seizures
  • Women of childbearing age
  • Breastfeeding
  • Use of MAO inhibitors
Detailed Dexedrine (Dextroamphetamine) risks & warnings »
  • Sudden discontinuation of medicine
  • Taking with alcohol
  • Taking other medicines that make you less alert
  • Age 65 years or older
  • Using other medicine(s) that slows the heart
    Detailed Kapvay (Clonidine) risks & warnings »
    Pregnancy category
    No specific alcohol-related info.No specific alcohol-related info.
    No specific food-related info.No specific food-related info.
    Kidneys and liver
    No specific kidneys and liver-related info.No specific kidneys and liver-related info.
    No specific sex-related info.No specific sex-related info.
    • Take your last dose before early afternoon, otherwise you won't be able to sleep.
    No specific sleep-related info.
    • Appetite suppression can occur. In clinical studies, long-term treatment with stimulants similar to Dexedrine (Dextroamphetamine) caused a temporary slowing of growth rate (both height and weight) in children who started the medication before they started puberty. Doctors should monitor children's growth during treatment.
    No specific weight-related info.
    Upsides and benefits
    • Recommended as a first-choice medication to treat ADHD in both adults and children.
    • Available as a generic, so it is cheaper than other medications used to treat ADHD.
    • Available in an immediate release and extended release form, which allows for once or twice a day dosing.
    • Can be used alone or together with a stimulant-type medicine to treat ADHD.
    • In studies, it improved attention span and lowered hyperactivity and impulsivity in children and adolescents ages 6 to 17.
    • Also treats blood pressure and some nervous system and psychiatric conditions.
    Downsides and risks
    • Fruit juice lowers the amount of Dexedrine (Dextroamphetamine) that gets into your body.
    • If you want to stop taking Dexedrine (Dextroamphetamine), you have to talk to your doctor since stopping cold turkey can cause withdrawal symptoms.
    • Dexedrine (Dextroamphetamine) is usually not used long-term since it can be habit-forming.
    • Can lower blood pressure.
    • The pill form can make some people sleepy, dizzy, and have dry mouth.
    • You can't miss doses. Stopping Clonidine suddenly can cause your blood pressure to go up suddenly, which raises the risk of heart attack and stroke.
    Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
    • Take your last dose before early afternoon, otherwise you won't be able to sleep.
    • Don't take with fruit juice or vitamin C, because they'll lower the amount of Dexedrine (Dextroamphetamine) that gets into your body.
    • Can affect your concentration, so don't drive or do anything that requires concentration until you know how your body reacts to it.
    • If you've been taking Dexedrine (Dextroamphetamine) for a while and decide to stop it, you'll experience withdrawal symptoms if you stop it too fast.
    • Can cause reduced appetite, insomnia, and restlessness.
    • Can cause drowsiness, headache, dizziness, and dry mouth.
    • For ADHD: Might take up to 2 weeks to see effects.
    • For high blood pressure: Check your blood pressure 1 week after starting this medicine, and tell your doctor if it hasn't improved.
    • If side effects don't go away, talk to your doctor about alternatives.
    • Don't stop taking this medicine suddenly.
    Learn more
    More about DexedrineSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
    More about KapvaySide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert