How Long Does Dexedrine (Dextroamphetamine) Stay In Your System?
Dexedrine can be detected on various drug tests for up to two days after last use.
Dexedrine and Dexedrine Spansule are brand-name medications that contain the central nervous system stimulant drug dextroamphetamine sulfate. They are prescribed for the treatment of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and narcolepsy.
When used as prescribed, Dexedrine can improve focus, impulse control, and mood in those with ADHD, or boost energy and wakefulness in those with narcolepsy.
However, the drug has a high potential for abuse, dependence, and addiction.
Dexedrine Drug Tests & Detection Times
Dextroamphetamine (d-amphetamine) is a type of amphetamine salt included with other amphetamines in Adderall/Adderall XR. It can be detected in drug screenings.
As a schedule II controlled substance, it is illegal for anyone without a proper prescription to buy, sell, possess, or use Dexedrine.
General detection periods for dextroamphetamine include:
- urine tests: 1-2 days after last dose
- blood tests: 1-2 days after last dose
- hair follicle tests: up to 90 days, although hair follicle tests are uncommon and less reliable than other options for drug testing
Factors That May Influence Dexedrine’s Detection Period
How long a drug remains active in the body, and detectable in a drug screening, include:
- whether a person took Dexedrine immediate-release tablets, or Dexedrine Spansule extended-release capsules
- how much Dexedrine was in a person’s last dose
- how often a person has been using Dexedrine
- body mass
- physical activity
- a person’s tolerance towards Dexedrine
- a person’s metabolism and physical health
- if a person has been using other drugs or alcohol with Dexedrine
- genetics and gender
Dextroamphetamine has a half-life of between 9–11 hours. This means that it takes around ten hours for an average individual’s body to remove or eliminate one half of the remaining dose of the drug.
It takes around five or six half-lives to fully remove a substance from the body in most cases.
The half-lives of similar immediate-release prescription stimulant medications include:
- Adderall (amphetamine sulfate portion): 9-11 hours
- Desoxyn (methamphetamine): 5-30 hours
- Ritalin, Concerta (methylphenidate): 2-3 hours
- Vyvanse (Lisdexamfetamine): less than one hour, though lisdexamfetamine is converted in the body into dextroamphetamine as its active metabolite
Dexedrine Onset & Length Of Effect
In its immediate-release form, Dexedrine takes effect within 30 to 90 minutes after being taken and lasts around two hours. This means that the drug must be frequently re-dosed.
The Dexedrine Spansule formulation takes 90 to 120 minutes to take effect and lasts for eight to ten hours.
Dexedrine’s Effects In The Body
When dextroamphetamine enters the brain it binds to certain receptors and disrupts the function of dopamine transporter, norepinephrine transporter, and serotonin transporter proteins. This means that the brain begins keeping more of these neurotransmitters active for longer.
By blocking this reuptake, dextroamphetamine triggers a huge number of effects in the brain and body and greatly increases overall central nervous system activity.
The effects of CNS stimulant drugs can benefit those with ADHD or narcolepsy, assuming the drugs are taken at therapeutic doses.
At high doses, however, increased dopamine can trigger a potent euphoria similar to a methamphetamine high, though not as long lasting. It can also trigger a wide variety of potential health hazards.
Dexedrine Side Effects
Side effects of dextroamphetamine, which may be more likely or more severe if the drug is abused, include the following:
- blurred vision
- chest pain
- elevated or abnormal heart rate
- heart palpitations
- difficulty breathing
- foot or leg swelling
- muscle weakness
- temporarily delayed growth in pediatric patients (children and adolescents)
Dexedrine Adverse Effects
Potential adverse effects of dextroamphetamine use or abuse include:
- overdose effects
- dependence or addiction
- allergic reactions
- circulation problems
- changes in sexual function or desire
- changes in taste
- dry mouth
- hives or rash
- weight loss
- high blood pressure
- cardiovascular events, including heart attack, stroke, and sudden death
- psychosis, including delusions, hallucinations, and agitation
Because of the risk of cardiovascular problems, Dexedrine should be used with caution by those with a personal or family history of heart problems, including tachycardia, hypertension, heart disease, and heart abnormalities. It should never be abused by a person with these issues.
Dexedrine should also be used with caution by those who have circulation problems, Tourette’s syndrome, a personal or family history of mental health issues or mood disorders, glaucoma, hyperthyroidism, or a personal or family history of drug abuse.
The effects of amphetamines on pregnancy and breastfeeding are generally harmful, and the drug should be avoided by pregnant or breastfeeding women.
Dexedrine should not be used within fourteen days of MOAI (monoamine oxidase inhibitor) antidepressants due the risk of a fatal drug interaction. Other drug interactions may also occur.
If you or a loved one struggle with prescription substance abuse, please contact us to learn about our outpatient healthcare options.
Northeast Addition Editorial Team
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This page does not provide medical advice.