Study Claims Adderall Abuse Increasing in Young Adults

PHOTO: Adderall abuse is on the rise in young adults, according to a new study by researchers at Johns Hopkins University.PlayGetty Images
WATCH Adderall Alert: Study Sees Rise in Abuse

Adderall abuse is on the rise in young adults, according to a new study by researchers at Johns Hopkins University.

Adderall is a stimulant drug often used to treat attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and narcolepsy.

The study, published Tuesday in the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, claims that while the number of prescriptions for Adderall for ADHD haven't increased, there is a sharp rise in the number of young adults aged 18 to 25 years old who are abusing the drug.

The study compared trends in use, abuse and emergency room visits associated with the drug from 2006 through 2011. Researchers say that while the number of prescriptions didn’t change during that period, nonmedical use increased by 67.1 percent and emergency room visits went up by 155.9 percent.

One-half of those ER visits were as a result of people who mixed Adderall with alcohol or other illicit drugs, the study found.

Those who were using the drug inappropriately were getting it primarily from friends or relatives, most of whom had obtained it from a doctor, the study said.

Dr. Richard Besser appeared on “GMA” on Wednesday to weigh in on the results of the study and discuss the side effects of Adderall. Watch the video to see what he said.