Getting a diagnosis - harder than I t... - CHADD's Adult ADH...

CHADD's Adult ADHD Support

11,878 members3,154 posts

Getting a diagnosis - harder than I thought!

Figitandhum profile image

I'm an older guy who has had ADHD before it was invented. But of course back then I was just a lazy, distracted, unfocused, fidgety kid and a disappointment to my parents for being 'smart' yet failing all the time. Despite the fact that my 3 children and most of my grandchildren are on medication for ADHD, it took an innocent question from an in-law to make me aware that I have it in spades! Pick a symptom and that's me. DUH. She gave me some Dextroamp 5mg that she said was a little pick me up prescribed for when she got home from work since she took 35 mg in the mornings. (Yeah, Yeah I know, bad to share drugs) I tried one and was astounded at the marvelous effect on my ability to produce and focus. The fog lifted, projects became easily doable instead of overwhelming; previously onerous jobs became simple to walk through. Took one 5mg pill in the morning for eight weeks to see if this was sustainable, with nothing but the most desirable outcomes I could imagine. No side effects I could feel except it wore off about 3 pm and the fog came back.

So I went to my primary care doctor today, explaining everything and asking for a diagnosis and prescription. He balked, saying I'd need to go be cleared by a cardiologist first and then get a complete psychological workup and diagnosis before he would even talk with me about it. Is that the normal procedure these days? I thought an MD could diagnose. Sure I'm older but in great shape and he's known me for 25 years. Well, thanks for reading and any advice or help would be nice. I want a diagnosis!!!

6 Replies

Not a doc! But depending on your age, they might want to check your heart to ensure it’s healthy enough to handle any type of stimulant they prescribe you. I’m 22 y/o, take 30mg Adderall XR and I still have moments where my heart beat gets pretty quick. I would schedule an appointment with a psychiatrist and cardiologist around the same time. So either way you can get the answers you need maybe without such a long wait. Hope this helps :) feel free to reach out if you have anymore questions!

Ugh. That sucks. Yes I do believe it is harder to get prescriptions we want, or suspect we need. At my physician, they gave me the written tests for ADHD or some version of it (they actually believed I couldn't have it because it was only something kids could have--BAFFLED on that one) AND were more slap happy to give me written tests for Anxiety and Depression AND IMMEDIATELY PUT ME ON ANTI-DEPRESSANTS. My gut told me they were tied in with pharma reps so I got out of there without what I needed. I hope your journey is better.

Yep. I believe my doctor is scared of the responsibility for him involved. Which is reasonable. Ironically he has had me taking my blood pressure daily for the months before and after I began taking the stimulant and my pressure actually dropped to an average of 169/70 during that period. Of course I was excersicing 5 days a week too so that helped. Anyway, thanks for your answer and you were right to run. Your gut was right!

I was diagnosed as an older person, and, like you, when medicated found the effect to be life-changing. My G.P, also a sceptic, was not convinced so my diagnosis was made privately with a psychiatrist who specializes in ADHD. It's unfortunate that you have to go privately to get a diagnosis but that's the reality when it comes to a condition that is not widely accepted as a factor in adulthood. If you do have heart trouble then it's best to be careful. As an older person, the stimulants do tend to elevate blood pressure, however, the benefits to the medication, for me personally, are worth the risk.

Figitandhum profile image
Figitandhum in reply to TAJB

Thanks. That is a great idea about a private psychiatrist who may specialize. I also feel the benefits are worth the risk. I have good genetics (mom lived happily to 98) and my heart has never given any trouble at all. All Igotta say is sure wish I'd known when i was 14 and possibly avoided tons of pain and struggle.

TAJB profile image
TAJB in reply to Figitandhum

We all wish that for ourselves. It's only now I can look back and think 'why the hell didn't somebody tell me?' 😀👍 No regrets, you can't change the past but you can do something about the present and the future.

You may also like...