Methylphenidate (MPH) is an amphetamine-like prescription stimulant commonly used to treat Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) in children and adults. It is also one of the primary drugs used to treat symptoms of traumatic brain injury and the daytime drowsiness symptoms of narcolepsy and chronic fatigue syndrome. Brand names of drugs that contain methylphenidate include Ritalin® (Ritalina®, Rilatine®), Concerta® (a timed-release capsule), Metadate®, Methylin® and Rubifen®. Focalin® is a preparation containing only dextro-methylphenidate, rather than the usual racemic dextro- and laevo-methylphenidate mixture of other formulations.
Common reported side effects are: difficulty sleeping (Which can lead in turn to other problems); loss of appetite (Thus its use as an appitite supressant); irritability; nervousness; stomach aches; headaches; dry mouth; blurry vision; nausea; dizziness; drowsiness; motor tics or tremors.
Less common side effects are: hypersensitivity; anorexia; palpitations; blood pressure and pulse changes; cardiac arrhythmia; anemia; scalp hair loss; toxic psychosis.
There have also been reports of: abnormal liver function; cerebral arteritis; leukopenia; death.
Medline lists a number of side-effects of unquantified frequency.