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 511 278
Fatigue 455 225
Problems concentrating 165 97
Brain fog 74 49
Attention deficit disorder 65 52
Narcolepsy 64 25

Show all 87 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 69
Moderate 129
Mild 193
None 277

Commonly reported side effects and conditions associated with Methylphenidate

Side effect Patients Percentage
Decreased appetite 46
Anxious mood 22
Dry mouth 22
Irritability 21
Jittery feeling 19
Headaches 13

Show all 156 reported side effects

Dosages

Based on patients currently taking Methylphenidate

Dosage Patients Percentage
10 mg daily 13
20 mg daily 10
20 mg twice daily 9
5 mg daily 7
10 mg twice daily 7
40 mg daily 7
18 mg daily 6
30 mg daily 6
36 mg daily 6
5 mg twice daily 5

See all 44 dosages

Why patients stopped taking Methylphenidate

Multiple reasons could be selected

Reason Patients Percentage
Did not seem to work 209
Side effects too severe 163
Doctor's advice 121
Other 114
Personal research 25
Course of treatment ended 21
Change in health plan coverage 12
Expense 11
See all 479 patients who've stopped taking Methylphenidate

Duration

Currently taking Methylphenidate

Duration Patients Percentage
Less than 1 month 1
1 - 6 months 11
6 months - 1 year 13
1 - 2 years 17
2 - 5 years 41
5 - 10 years 25
10 years or more 19

Stopped taking Methylphenidate

Duration Patients Percentage
Less than 1 month 109
1 - 6 months 128
6 months - 1 year 67
1 - 2 years 80
2 - 5 years 73
5 - 10 years 34
10 years or more 12
Adherence
Adherence Evaluations Percentage
Always 448
Usually 139
Sometimes 54
Never taken as prescribed 27
Burden
Burden Evaluations Percentage
Very hard to take 15
Somewhat hard to take 76
A little hard to take 98
Not at all hard to take 479
Cost per month
Cost per month Evaluations Percentage
$200+ 4
$100-199 13
$50-99 30
$25-49 65
< $25 265
Not specified 291

What people switch to and from

Patients started taking Methylphenidate after stopping:

Treatment Patients Percentage
Amphetamine-Dextroamphetamine (Adderall) 30
Modafinil (Provigil) 12
Atomoxetine (Strattera) 10
Lisdexamfetamine (Vyvanse) 8
Armodafinil (Nuvigil) 6

Show all 17 treatments patients report switching from

Patients stopped taking Methylphenidate and switched to:

Treatment Patients Percentage
Amphetamine-Dextroamphetamine (Adderall) 37
Modafinil (Provigil) 23
Lisdexamfetamine (Vyvanse) 21
Atomoxetine (Strattera) 9
Dextroamphetamine (Dexedrine) 6

Show all 16 treatments patients report switching to

Last updated:

54 patient evaluations for Methylphenidate

Oct 28, 2018 (Started May 25, 2011)

  • Effectiveness
    Major (for attention deficit disorder)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for inattention)
  • Effectiveness
    Slight (for irritability from auditory stimulation)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for lack of motivation)
  • Effectiveness
    Moderate (for memory problems)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for problems concentrating)
  • Side effects
    Mild (difficulty sleeping)
  • Adherence
    Always
  • Burden
    Not at all hard to take
Dosage: 27 mg Twice daily
Advice & Tips: I recently switched from the sustained release (4-6 hours) to extended release (8-12 hours) and it has helped a lot.
Cost: < $25 monthly

Apr 6, 2017 (Started May 25, 2011)

  • Effectiveness
    Major (for attention deficit disorder)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for inattention)
  • Effectiveness
    Slight (for irritability from auditory stimulation)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for lack of motivation)
  • Effectiveness
    Moderate (for memory problems)
  • Effectiveness
    Major (for problems concentrating)
  • Side effects
    None
  • Adherence
    Always
  • Burden
    Not at all hard to take
Dosage: 40 mg Daily
Cost: < $25 monthly

Apr 18, 2011 (Started May 25, 2011)

  • Effectiveness
    Major (for problems concentrating)
  • Side effects
    None
  • Adherence
    Always
  • Burden
    Not at all hard to take
Cost: < $25 monthly

  • 0 helpful marks

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

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: 324 mg Daily
Cost: < $25 monthly

  • 0 helpful marks
Last updated:
Showing 3 of 54 patient evaluations for Methylphenidate