Compare Vyvanse vs. Dexedrine

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

Vyvanse
(Lisdexamfetamine)

Dexedrine
(Dextroamphetamine)

Helps you focus and stay alert. Vyvanse (Lisdexamfetamine) is a first-choice treatment for ADHD and you only have to take it once a day. However, it's only available as brand name drug, so it can be expensive.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.
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Reviews & ratings
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4.924276169265033Vyvanse
Reviews for Vyvanse (Lisdexamfetamine)
65%
of people say Vyvanse (Lisdexamfetamine) is worth it
46%
say it works well
18%
say it's a big hassle
Reviews for Dexedrine (Dextroamphetamine)
90%
+25% vs. Vyvanse (Lisdexamfetamine)
76%
+30% vs. Vyvanse (Lisdexamfetamine)
24%
6% vs. Vyvanse (Lisdexamfetamine)
Side effects
VyvanseDexedrine
  • Decreased appetite 35%
  • Dry mouth 23%
  • Sleep difficulty 19%
  • Any side effect 8%
  • Abdominal pain upper 6%
  • Vomiting 5%
  • Drowsiness 1%
  • Fever 1%
More Vyvanse side effects »

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

FDA side effect reports for Dexedrine »
How it works
VyvanseDexedrine
Vyvanse (Lisdexamfetamine) is an amphetamine stimulant. Researchers don't know exactly how it works for ADHD, but it increases norepinephrine and dopamine activity in the brain, which affects attention and behavior.Dexedrine (Dextroamphetamine) is a stimulant. It treats narcolepsy and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) by increasing norepinephrine and dopamine activity in the brain.
Type of medication
VyvanseDexedrine
StimulantPrescription only
StimulantPrescription only
Available as
VyvanseDexedrine
  • Pill
  • Pill
  • Extended release
  • Liquid
Used for (click to learn more)
VyvanseDexedrine
Risk factors for serious side effects
VyvanseDexedrine
  • Taking monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOI) 14 days before starting
  • History of drug abuse
  • History of heart problems
  • History of psychotic episodes
  • History of Bipolar Disorder
  • Children ages 6 to 12
    Detailed Vyvanse (Lisdexamfetamine) risks & warnings »
    • 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 »
    Pregnancy category
    VyvanseDexedrine
    CFDA pregnancy category (Weigh risks vs. benefits)

    Research studies with animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. It hasn’t been properly studied in humans. The benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

    See the FDA package insert
    CFDA pregnancy category (Weigh risks vs. benefits)

    Research studies with animals found harmful effects on unborn babies. It hasn’t been properly studied in humans. The benefits might outweigh the risks even if you’re pregnant. Talk with your doctor.

    See the FDA package insert
    Alcohol
    • Don't take it with alcohol or drugs.
    No specific alcohol-related info.
    Food
    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.
    Sex
    No specific sex-related info.No specific sex-related info.
    Sleep
    No specific sleep-related info.
    • Take your last dose before early afternoon, otherwise you won't be able to sleep.
    Weight
    • Appetite suppression may occur. In clinical studies, long-term treatment with stimulants similar to Vyvanse (Lisdexamfetamine) caused a temporary slowing of growth rate (both height and weight) in children ages six to twelve years. Doctors should monitor children's growth during treatment.
    • 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.
    Upsides and benefits
    VyvanseDexedrine
    • First-choice medication to treat ADHD.
    • Vyvanse (Lisdexamfetamine) is used in combination with counseling or other non-drug therapies to treat ADHD.
    • Usually dosed once a day, so parents don't need to send the medication with their children to school.
    • The capsule can be taken whole, or opened into a glass of water or orange juice, or swallowed in a spoonful of yogurt.
    • 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.
    Downsides and risks
    VyvanseDexedrine
    • Has to be taken in the morning, otherwise it can cause insomnia later that night.
    • Not available as a generic medication, so it can be expensive.
    • It's a controlled medication and should be locked up to prevent potential abuse.
    • Not safe for people with a history of heart problems.
    • 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.
    Tips from our pharmacists for people taking the medication
    VyvanseDexedrine
    • Take Vyvanse (Lisdexamfetamine) early in the morning to prevent insomnia later that night.
    • Avoid driving the first few days that you take Vyvanse (Lisdexamfetamine) until you know how your body reacts to it.
    • Don't take it with alcohol or drugs.
    • Store it in a locked area to prevent abuse.
    • It can cause changes in your mood.
    • Can raise your blood pressure and pulse, so it's not safe for people with heart problems.
    • 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.
    Learn more
    More about VyvanseSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert
    More about DexedrineSide effectsReviews & ratingsAlternativesFDA package insert