What Strattera Is
Strattera is a prescription drug manufactured by Lilly USA designed to treat the symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD. Occurring in both adults and juveniles, ADHD is characterized by habitual inattention to details, procrastination, disorganization, difficulty with tasks that require concentration, forgetfulness and tendencies to be distracted easily. Strattera is designed to be taken orally once or twice per day as directed by a doctor.
When Strattera Takes Effect
The manufacturer of Strattera says it may take 4 to 6 weeks after a patient has reached his target dose before ADHD symptoms begin to improve. A physician familiar with the patient always decides dosage directions for Strattera on a case-by-case basis. However, it is common for patients to be initially prescribed a low dose and then gradually upgraded to more potent doses, hence the manufacturer's reference to a "target dose." In some cases, a physician may want to evaluate a patient's progress at each dosage level before prescribing changes rather than put the patient on a comprehensive dosage schedule at the outset. The manufacturer also says patients taking Strattera should begin noticing improvement as early as 2 weeks after beginning a regimen. As with most prescription drugs, the manufacturer asserts that Strattera may not work at all for some patients and that close monitoring by a physician is crucial to assessing its effectiveness. It is not approved for those who have recently taken a monoamine oxidase inhibitor anti-depressant or who have glaucoma. Patients with histories of heart problems should also discuss these problems with their doctors prior to beginning Strattera regimens.
How to Determine if Strattera is Working
Since ADHD is a behavioral disorder, the most reliable way to tell if Strattera is working is to track closely any behavioral changes in the patient. Patients taking the drug should do their best to pay attention to and remember how they feel, particularly when performing tasks that require concentration. However, since ADHD sufferers typically have trouble paying attention even to their own ADHD symptoms, it is helpful for them to ask for help from others in tracking their progress. Ideally, the people who spend the greatest amount of time with an ADHD sufferer on Strattera should try to look for signs that the ADHD is improving or worsening and should report this progress to both the patient and the patient's physician. Signs that Strattera is working include increases in attention span, focus, organization, memory and tendencies to resist distractions.