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I know alzheimer's can be caused by excess dopamine, and ADHD by not enough dopamine... So if i take Adderall (dextroamphetamine and racemic amphetamine) for adhd, am i at risk of alzheimer's?

9 doctors weighed in
Dr. Seth Kunen
Clinical Psychology
4 doctors agree

In brief: Probably not

The current theories of ad emphasize reduced synthesis of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine along with amyloid plaques & neurofibrillary tangles inside nerve cells that disrupt neural functioning.
Ad individuals also lose locus coeruleus cells that generate norepinephrine. Other theories suggest possible inflammatory and glutamatergic roles. Parkinson's is assoc'd w/ Dopamine loss, not ad.

In brief: Probably not

The current theories of ad emphasize reduced synthesis of the neurotransmitter acetylcholine along with amyloid plaques & neurofibrillary tangles inside nerve cells that disrupt neural functioning.
Ad individuals also lose locus coeruleus cells that generate norepinephrine. Other theories suggest possible inflammatory and glutamatergic roles. Parkinson's is assoc'd w/ Dopamine loss, not ad.
Dr. Seth Kunen
Dr. Seth Kunen
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1 comment
Dr. Ed Friedlander
Both claims are simply untrue, and even ideas that "Parkinson's is caused by insufficient dopamine" which is somewhat true ignores the fact that these brain diseases are really all about failure of neurons to develop or neurons dying off. I'm sorry you got bad information and I appreciate that you have an inquiring mind.
Dr. Kerry Friesen
Preventive Medicine
1 doctor agrees

In brief: AD neurotransmitters

Ad is more complicated that a simple neurotransmitter imbalance.
Communication between brain cells is compromised in ad, dopamine, acetylcholine and glutamate all have a role to play. While some cortical pathways are shared in add and ad, one does not necessarily increase the risk of the other. Maximally treating your add including non-drug therapy is critical to maintaining a healthy brain.

In brief: AD neurotransmitters

Ad is more complicated that a simple neurotransmitter imbalance.
Communication between brain cells is compromised in ad, dopamine, acetylcholine and glutamate all have a role to play. While some cortical pathways are shared in add and ad, one does not necessarily increase the risk of the other. Maximally treating your add including non-drug therapy is critical to maintaining a healthy brain.
Dr. Kerry Friesen
Dr. Kerry Friesen
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Dr. Ryan Estevez
Psychiatry - Geriatric

In brief: No correlation

Alzheimer's is due to a combination of many different factors but excess Dopamine is not one of them. There is no correlation or known risk between taking Adderall (dextroamphetamine and racemic amphetamine) and developing alzheimer's.

In brief: No correlation

Alzheimer's is due to a combination of many different factors but excess Dopamine is not one of them. There is no correlation or known risk between taking Adderall (dextroamphetamine and racemic amphetamine) and developing alzheimer's.
Dr. Ryan Estevez
Dr. Ryan Estevez
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Dr. Maureen Nash
Psychiatry - Geriatric

In brief: Not related

Alzheimer's disease is not related to Dopamine as far as is known.

In brief: Not related

Alzheimer's disease is not related to Dopamine as far as is known.
Dr. Maureen Nash
Dr. Maureen Nash
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1 comment
Dr. Bennett Machanic
Of course, you are correct, as dopamine plays only an indirect bystander role late in the multi-neurotransmitter deficiency degeneration, but kudos for tackling this very alternative therapy rather unique question.
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