What is Methylphenidate?

Category: Prescription Drugs

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Methylphenidate is a central nervous system stimulant used in the treatment of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder and for symptomatic management of narcolepsy. It may also be used for depression, especially in the elderly or medically ill.

Reported purpose & perceived effectiveness
Purpose Patients Evaluations Perceived Effectiveness
Attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder 1169 290
Fatigue 500 230
Narcolepsy 331 25
Brain fog 199 51
Problems concentrating 176 104
Idiopathic hypersomnia 105 16

Show all 100 reasons taken


  • Major
  • Moderate
  • Slight
  • None
  • Can't tell

Side effects

Side effects as an overall problem

Side effects as an overall problem
Severity Evaluations Percentage
Severe 68
Moderate 128
Mild 201
None 286

Commonly reported side effects and conditions associated with Methylphenidate

Side effect Patients Percentage
Decreased appetite 47
Anxious mood 23
Dry mouth 22
Irritability 22
Jittery feeling 17
Headaches 13

Show all 155 reported side effects

Dosages

Based on patients currently taking Methylphenidate

Dosage Patients Percentage
10 mg daily 9
20 mg daily 6
36 mg daily 4
54 mg daily 4
20 mg three times daily 4
20 mg twice daily 3
5mg as needed 3
5 mg twice daily 2
10 mg three times daily 2
50 mg daily 2

See all 30 dosages

Why patients stopped taking Methylphenidate

Multiple reasons could be selected

Reason Patients Percentage
Did not seem to work 226
Side effects too severe 169
Doctor's advice 130
Other 120
Personal research 28
Course of treatment ended 23
Change in health plan coverage 14
Expense 13
See all 518 patients who've stopped taking Methylphenidate

Duration

Currently taking Methylphenidate

Duration Patients Percentage
1 - 6 months 3
6 months - 1 year 7
1 - 2 years 2
2 - 5 years 12
5 - 10 years 18
10 years or more 12

Stopped taking Methylphenidate

Duration Patients Percentage
Less than 1 month 107
1 - 6 months 132
6 months - 1 year 74
1 - 2 years 79
2 - 5 years 79
5 - 10 years 36
10 years or more 15
Adherence
Adherence Evaluations Percentage
Always 457
Usually 142
Sometimes 57
Never taken as prescribed 27
Burden
Burden Evaluations Percentage
Very hard to take 15
Somewhat hard to take 77
A little hard to take 105
Not at all hard to take 486
Cost per month
Cost per month Evaluations Percentage
$200+ 4
$100-199 13
$50-99 32
$25-49 67
< $25 271
Not specified 296

What people switch to and from

Patients started taking Methylphenidate after stopping:

Treatment Patients Percentage
Amphetamine-Dextroamphetamine (Adderall) 36
Modafinil (Provigil) 14
Atomoxetine (Strattera) 10
Lisdexamfetamine (Vyvanse) 10
Methylphenidate (Ritalin) 9

Show all 18 treatments patients report switching from

Patients stopped taking Methylphenidate and switched to:

Treatment Patients Percentage
Amphetamine-Dextroamphetamine (Adderall) 95
Lisdexamfetamine (Vyvanse) 36
Modafinil (Provigil) 26
Atomoxetine (Strattera) 10
Dextroamphetamine (Dexedrine) 9

Show all 19 treatments patients report switching to

Last updated:

53 patient evaluations for Methylphenidate

Jan 11, 2021 (Started Aug 14, 2016)

  • Effectiveness
    Moderate (for depressed mood)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder)
  • Side effects
    Mild (muscle tension, stomach irritation if not enough food in stomach)
  • Adherence
    Always
  • Burden
    Not at all hard to take
Dosage: 10 mg Daily
Advice & Tips: Eat regularly!

Aug 13, 2018 (Started Aug 14, 2016)

  • Effectiveness
    Major (for attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for depressed mood)
  • Side effects
    Mild (muscle tension, stomach irritation if not enough food in stomach)
  • Adherence
    Always
  • Burden
    Not at all hard to take
Dosage: 10 mg Daily
Advice & Tips: I switched from Adderall XR to Methylphenidate d/t fact that Adderall was making me jumpy to a fault. I find that the Ritalin doesn't make me jumpy; I have more clarity & focused thinking. I had to add the 10 mg. at noon b/c my morning dosage of 20 mg. was fizzling out by 3 p.m. It should really be taken with food d/t possible stomach aggravations.
Cost: < $25 monthly

Dec 15, 2017 (Started Aug 14, 2016)

  • Effectiveness
    Major (for attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder)
  • Side effects
    Mild (muscle tension)
  • Adherence
    Always
  • Burden
    Not at all hard to take
Dosage: 10 mg Daily
Cost: < $25 monthly

  • 0 helpful marks

Jul 22, 2020 (Started Jul 01, 2020)

  • Effectiveness
    Slight (for attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder)
  • Side effects
    Moderate (dry mouth)
  • Adherence
    Sometimes
  • Burden
    A little hard to take
Dosage: 10 mg Twice daily
Cost: < $25 monthly

  • 0 helpful marks

Jul 1, 2020 (Started Jul 01, 2003)

  • Effectiveness
    Moderate (for attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder)
  • Side effects
    Mild (dry mouth)
  • Adherence
    Sometimes
  • Burden
    Very hard to take
Dosage: 36 mg Daily
Cost: < $25 monthly

Jan 13, 2018 (Started Jul 01, 2003)

  • Effectiveness
    Moderate (for attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder)
  • Side effects
    Mild (dry mouth)
  • Adherence
    Usually
  • Burden
    Not at all hard to take
Dosage: 36 mg Daily
Cost: < $25 monthly

  • 0 helpful marks
Last updated:
Showing 3 of 53 patient evaluations for Methylphenidate