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Special Report: Adderal Abuse

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TYLER (KYTX) - Have you ever thought your child may be taking the most abused drug in America, and you knew about it?

It's true.

Adderall has been named as the most abused and over-used legal drug.

It may seem harmless, and if it's prescribed to you and taken correctly, it can work wonders.

But the problem arises when students buy it to get through an all nighter, stay up for a great party, or even moms who need a pick-me-up to last.

The scary part, it's made of amphetamine.

"It worked. I focused. I did all of my assignments," says Shane.

He has asked not to be identified , but agreed to talk to us about his use of adderall in college.

"Adderall was an easy fix to help me focus," says Shane.

He was prescribed adderall his second semester, but quickly learned the drug that helped him pay attention, was highly coveted.

"When they would find out I was prescribed this medication, you would see people's eyes light up. And they would say, 'well, let me have a couple.' Then it was 'let me buy a couple.' Then after they bought a couple, it was let me buy your whole prescription," say Shane.

Studies show college students are most likely to try adderall or something similar.

Most numbers estimate 20-30 percent of college students will take it to help them keep their eyes open and their nose in the books for a few more hours to study or for extra fun on a night out.

"You're playing Russian Roulette with these kinds of medications," says Dr. Bryan Lowery with Trinity Clinic Manhatton.

Dr. Lowery says taking someone else's prescribed medication could be deadly.

"A lot of kids that take it will have palpitations, headaches, shortness of breath. They'll have anxiety or a panic attack," says Dr. Lowery.

Side affects of a drug you shouldn't be using, and the mis-use goes beyond co-eds, right to suburbia.

"Moms want this medication to get that energy during the day. Help them be focused, get all the things done tat they can when their kids are in school," says Dr. Lowery.

What is a legal fix for some, can be a wonder drug for others.

"Adderall, rittalin, these different kinds of drugs have been around for a long time, are basically derivatives of methamphetamines. Which, methamphetamine is illegal, these are legal and people are using it in illegal ways," says Dr. Lowery.

A derivative of meth, a highly addictive drug.

These legal narcotics used illegally are being sold, turning some into campus dealers.

"If I could sell a prescription that cost me $7 for $200, I was going to do it. And I did it every time after that," says Shane.

Shane stopped using his adderall, but his addiction continued.

"In my mind I needed that kick to keep me going, and then I could get that kick from the coke that somebody had that I could trade for," says Shane.

Creating a bigger problem with drugs for years.

Doctors say using most any drug can open doors for others, and that's why it's important to Dr. Lowery to vet patients, make sure they don't try to self diagnose a problem, or ask for anything by name.

"Most patients should go through a thorough evaluation, and I would say a neurological evaluation," says Dr. Lowery.

Keeping prescriptions out of the wrong hands, so they don't have to experience anything that could lead them to more drugs, or something worse.

"Who's to blame? The doctors, the patients, the drug dealers, the drug companies?" asks Shane.

In the state of Texas, adderall and other amphetamine based drugs are regulated and watched very closely.

Doctors fill out forms that are copied to the state and a database that houses patients names and information on where they obtained that prescription.

That allows doctors to know if the patient is asking for the same medicine in multiple places.

Not only does take the medication illegally have health implications, but it carries legal ramifications too.

The sale, possession and use of adderall for illegitimate purposes is a felony.

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