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Methylphenidate

Drug Class: Commonly Known As: Category:
Central Nervous System Agent Ritalin® tablet, Ritalin® LA capsule, Medikinet® MR, Concerta® ER tablet Adult, Children

Methylphenidate - What is it for

Methylphenidate is a medication used in the treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). It belongs to a class of drugs known as stimulants, and it works by stimulating certain parts of the brain which are underactive. This medicine can help improve attention and concentration, reduce impulsive behavior, and manage sleep disorders.

Methylphenidate - Side Effects, Precautions, and Contraindications

What side effects can Methylphenidate cause?

Most of these side effects will get better or go away as the body gets used to the medication.

Common side effects include:

  • Stomach pain, nausea or vomiting – take it after food to reduce the side effects.
  • Headache
  • Nervousness, not being able to sleep
  • Dizzy or light headed – stand up slowly from a lying position.
  • Loss of appetite – weight loss may occur during the first few months of treatment.

Inform your doctor if the side effects above become severe and bothersome.

Rare but serious effects may sometimes occur. Contact the doctor as soon as possible if any of the following are noticed:

  • Fast or irregular heartbeat (palpitations)
  • Significant mood changes (e.g. depression) or mood swings or changes in personality (e.g. hallucinations)
  • Seizures, confusion
  • Blurred vision
  • Signs of allergic reaction such as rash, itching or hives on the skin, swelling of the face, lips, tongue or other parts of the body, shortness of breath, wheezing or trouble breathing.

Before taking Methylphenidate, what precautions must I follow?

What food or medicine must I avoid when I take Methylphenidate?

Methylphenidate - Dosage and How to Use

How should Methylphenidate be used?

The dosage of Methylphenidate should be individualised according to your or your child's clinical needs and responses. Your doctor would initially start a low dose, and then gradually increase to the dose that works best for you or your child.

Most methylphenidate preparations can be taken with or without food, except for Medikinet® MR. Medikinet® MR must be taken with or after food as it may affect its absorption.

If you or your child is taking Ritalin® LA, Medikinet® MR or Concerta® ER, it must not be crushed or chewed.

For Ritalin® LA and Medikinet® MR, the capsule may be opened and the capsule contents sprinkled onto a small amount (tablespoon) of room-temperature/cold food (e.g. applesauce or yoghurt), and must be administered immediately. It should not be stored for future use.

What should I do if I miss a dose?

Take the missed dose as soon as you remember it. However, if it is almost time for the next dose, skip the missed dose and take only the regularly scheduled dose. Do not take a double dose to make up for the missed one.

What should I do if I overdose?

Methylphenidate - Handling and Storage

How should I handle Methylphenidate safely?

How should I store Methylphenidate?

Keep away from children;#Keep in a cool, dry place, away from direct sunlight;#Store at room temperature;#

How should I dispose of Methylphenidate safely?

Methylphenidate - Additional Information

  • Updated on Thursday, September 6, 2018
  • Article contributed by Pharmacy Department KK Women's and Children's Hospital

    The information provided is not intended as medical advice. Terms of use. Information provided by SingHealth

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