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Adhansia XR vs Adderall: What’s the Difference?


Adhansia XR vs Adderall Whats the Difference

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Finding the right ADHD medication can be overwhelming, especially if you’re exploring stimulant medications. All stimulant-based ADHD medications work by boosting norepinephrine and dopamine levels to alleviate symptoms. However, many such medications are available via prescription, and each one is slightly different. 

Adhansia XR and Adderall are particularly similar, especially since Adderall comes in immediate- and extended-release formulas. In this article, we’ll outline details of each medication, including side effects and contraindications to cost comparison, so you can determine which one is right for you.

For more information on Adhansia XR and Adderall, schedule an appointment with a licensed healthcare provider on KlarityADHD today. We’ll help get you in front of an ADHD specialist within 48 hours or less.

What is Adhansia XR?

Adhansia XR (active ingredient: methylphenidate hydrochloride) is a once-a-day, extended-release stimulant approved for use in ADHD sufferers six years of age or older. Classified as a central nervous system (CNS) stimulant, Adhansia XR affects neurotransmitters in the brain that control focus, hyperactivity, and impulsivity. Adhansia XR is a federally controlled substance similar in structure to Concerta and Ritalin.

Forms and Dosages

Adhansia XR capsules are filled with microbeads that feature two layers of protection–an immediate-release layer and a controlled-release layer. When ingested, Adhansia XR releases about 20% of the medication load. One-hour after taking Adhansia XR, the controlled-release layer begins dissolving, releasing a steady stream of medication into the bloodstream for up to 16 hours.

Adhansia XR capsules come in six strengths: 25 mg, 35 mg, 45 mg, 55 mg, 70 mg, and 85 mg. The manufacturer, Purdue Pharmaceuticals L.P., recommends adults start off with 25 mg before increasing the dosage.

Take this medication whole and do not crush or chew the capsules. You can open the capsules and sprinkle the microbeads onto a tablespoon of applesauce or yogurt. Swallow the entire mixture to avoid chewing it. Don’t drink alcohol while taking Adhansia as it can result in the medication releasing earlier than intended. 

Conditions Treated

Adhansia XR is FDA approved for use in those with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.


Adhansia XR is not yet in generic form at the time of this writing. The average retail price for a one-month supply of 35 mg capsules of Adhansia XR, without health insurance, is approximately $407. With manufacturer and third-party coupons, you may be able to lower the price to $350. For accurate pricing information under your current health insurance plan, contact your provider’s pharmacy department.

Side Effects

Common side effects of Adhansia XR include but are not limited to:

  • Trouble sleeping 
  • Dry mouth
  • Decreased appetite 
  • Decreased weight

Severe but less common side effects of Adhansia XR include but are not limited to:

  • Circulation issues
  • Heart problems
  • Increased blood pressure
  • Increased mental issues
  • New or worsening bipolar issues

Warnings and Drug Interactions

Adhansia XR is a federally controlled substance and retains the potential for abuse and addiction. You should not take this medication if you have taken an MAOI within the past two weeks to treat depression. If you are considering getting pregnant, speak with a healthcare provider before taking this medication. Adhansia XR has been shown to pass into breastmilk. 

For more information on warnings and drug interactions with Adhansia XR, consult with an ADHD healthcare provider or your medication’s accompanying literature. 

What is Adderall?

Adderall is a mixture of four amphetamine salts: Dextroamphetamine Saccharate, Amphetamine Aspartate, Dextroamphetamine Sulfate, and Amphetamine Sulfate. This ADHD medication was approved by the FDA in 1996 for use in ADHD sufferers three years of age and older. Adderall is a federally controlled stimulant that maintains the potential for abuse and addiction. 

Forms and Dosages

Adderall comes in four strengths: 5 mg, 10 mg, 20 mg, and 30 mg. It can be taken 1-2 times per day with or without food. Adderall is a stimulant that can cause sleep pattern disruption. Do not take this medication too late in the day. Adderall comes in an immediate-release and an extended-release form. 

Conditions Treated

Adderall is FDA approved for use in individuals with ADHD and narcolepsy.


Adderall is in generic and brand name form. Without health insurance, you may be paying approximately $8 per day for a one-month supply. For accurate pricing under a health insurance plan, contact your provider’s pharmacy department. 

Side Effects

Common side effects of Adderall include but are not limited to:

  • Irregular heartbeat
  • Elevated heart rate
  • Increased blood pressure
  • Restlessness
  • Dry mouth
  • Diarrhea, constipation, nausea
  • Headache
  • Weight loss
  • Mood changes
  • Anxiety
  • Dizziness

Less common side effects of Adderall include but are not limited to:

  • Seizures
  • Eyesight instability
  • Urinary tract infection
  • Nausea
  • Fever
  • Stroke
  • Heart attack

Warnings and Drug Interactions

If you experience or have experienced any of the following conditions, speak with a healthcare provider before taking Adderall:

  • Heart problems like chest pain, shortness of breath
  • Signs of psychosis-like hallucinations or paranoia
  • Circulatory problems (numbness, pain, cold fingers & toes)
  • Seizures
  • Muscle twitches
  • Changes in vision

Certain medications can react poorly and even dangerously with Adderall. Refer to your medication’s accompanying literature or speak with a healthcare provider who can explain the warning and drug interactions regarding Adderall therapy.

Is Adhansia XR or Adderall Better For Your ADHD?

Finding the right medication for your ADHD may include a bit of trial and error. To further your chances of finding the right medication, speak with a healthcare provider who can diagnose and treat your specific ADHD condition, if applicable.

How Klarity Helps You Discover the Right ADHD Medication

Klarity can help you find the right ADHD medication by connecting you with an ADHD specialist in 48 hours or less. Book your online appointment now and see a licensed psychiatric provider in 2 days. If diagnosed, your provider will discuss the treatment options with you. Monthly refill fees start from $25.

Take a free self-evaluation, or schedule an appointment with a healthcare provider today!

Start today, and discuss your symptoms with a specialist who can help.

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