Difference Between Dextroamphetamine and Adderall


Main Difference

The main difference between Dextroamphetamine and Adderall is that Dextroamphetamine is the generic name of the drug, while Adderall is the brand name of a drug containing both dextroamphetamine and amphetamine.

Dextroamphetamine vs. Adderall

Dextroamphetamine is a single drug, while Adderall is a combination of two drugs. Dextroamphetamine is the generic name of the member of amphetamine while Adderall is the brand name of the amphetamine. Dextroamphetamine is dextroamphetamine; on the other hand, Adderall is a combination of dextroamphetamine and levoamphetamine. Dextroamphetamine immediate-release tablets are available in different strengths (2.5 ,5 , 7.5, 10 mg, 15, 20, and 30)in mg while Adderall immediate-release tablets are available in different strength (5, 7.5 , 10, 12.5 , 15 , 20 , and 30) in mg. Dextroamphetamine extended-release capsules are available in 5 mg, 10 mg, and 15 mg strength; on the other hand, Adderall extended-release dosage form is available in the same strength as its immediate release dosage form strength. Dextroamphetamine oral solution is available as 5 mg/5 mL while Adderall is not available in oral solution form.


Comparison Chart

Dextroamphetamine is the dextrorotary enantiomer of amphetamine which is most potent central nervous system stimulant.Adderall is the combination of two central nervous stimulants i-e Amphetamine and Dextroamphetamine.
Receptors at Which Drug Acts
Dextroamphetamine stimulates alpha and beta-adrenergic receptors.Adderall stimulates alpha and beta-adrenergic receptors.
Mode of Action
Dextroamphetamine has stimulatory actions on CNS.Adderall being a combination of Dextroamphetamine and Amphetamine has stimulatory actions on CNS.
Use in Narcolepsy
Dextroamphetamine is used to improve alertness in narcolepsy.Adderall is used to treat narcolepsy by improving mental alertness
Use in Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder
Dextroamphetamine is used to treat ADHD.Adderall is used to treat ADHD.
Athlete Performance
Dextroamphetamine is used to enhance Athlete performance.Adderall is used to enhance Athlete performance.
Available Dosage forms
Immediate release
Immediate release
overactive thyroid gland
behaving with excessive cheerfulness and activity
cardiovascular disease
Moderate to severe hypertension
Advanced arteriosclerosis.
Moderate to severe hypertension
Symptomatic cardiovascular disease
Glaucoma and Agitated states
Adverse Effects
Upset stomach, dry mouth, Dizziness, Weight loss, Changes in libidoUpset stomach, dry mouth, Dizziness, Weight loss, Changes in libido

What is Dextroamphetamine

Dextroamphetamine is the dextrorotatory synthetic amphetamines. It is potent CNS stimulator and sympathomimetic. Dextroamphetamine is more potent CNS stimulant than the Levoamphetamine. Dextroamphetamine has many mechanisms of actions like it blocks the uptake of adrenaline and dopamine, stimulates the release of monoamines, and inhibits monoamine oxidase. Dextroamphetamine is used to treat narcolepsy, attention deficit disorders, and hyperactivity in children. Dextroamphetamine is also used in cognitive enhancement and in athletic performance. Dextroamphetamine also finds its use as an aphrodisiac and euphoriant Dextroamphetamine is a psychotomimetic so it is also a drug of abuse. Dextroamphetamine exhibits the phenomena of dependence and addiction when it is used for a long period. Dextroamphetamine is available in dosage form, pharmaceutically as Dextroamphetamine sulfate. Dextroamphetamine can also be prescribed as the inactive prodrug (Lisdexamfetamine dimesylate) which after absorption converts into the Dextroamphetamine



The most famous brand containing Dextroamphetamine is Dexedrine.

What is Adderall

Adderall is a combination of salts of amphetamines. Among the amphetamine salts, Adderall has 25% levoamphetamine salts and 75% dextroamphetamine salts. Adderall is used to treat narcolepsy and attention deficit/ hyperactivity disorders. Adderall is also used to enhance cognitive functions and physical performance. Adderall is highly abused as a recreational drug. Adderall shows its pharmacological actions by enhancing the activity of the norepinephrine and dopamine in the brain. It is available as immediate release and extended-release tablets. Immediate-release Adderall contains a 3:1 mixture of immediate release d-amphetamine and l-amphetamine. Extended-release Adderall contains an equal amount of immediate-release and delayed-release d-amphetamine and l-amphetamine. Adderall shows the phenomena of tolerance. Overdose of Adderall leads to poisoning of the drug, which involves the convulsions and comma. High doses also lead to abnormal functioning of the cardiovascular and central nervous system.


Adderall itself is an example of the brand of amphetamines.

Key Differences

  1. Dextroamphetamine is dextroamphetamine, whereas Adderall is a combination of dextroamphetamine and levoamphetamine.
  2. Dextroamphetamine is a generic term while Adderall is a brand name.
  3. Dextroamphetamine immediate-release tablets and solution are available while Adderall immediate-release tablets are available.


The conclusion of the above discussion is that both Dextroamphetamine and Adderall are Amphetamines used to treat narcolepsy and attention deficit/ hyperactivity disorders and the basic difference is one is generic and other is a brand name of amphetamines.

Janet White

Janet White is a writer and blogger for Difference Wiki since 2015. She has a master's degree in science and medical journalism from Boston University. Apart from work, she enjoys exercising, reading, and spending time with her friends and family. Connect with her on Twitter @Janet__White

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