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Concerta Fact Sheet

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Medication Name (brand): 
Medication Name (clinical): 
methylphenidate extended release

McNeil, marketing exclusivity expires 2008


Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder in children and adolescents


Blocks reuptake of norepinephrine and dopamine

  • Supplied as 18 mg yellow, 27 mg gray, 36 mg white, and 54 mg brownish-red tablets (not breakable due to extended release vehicle).

  • Start at 18 mg QAM, and increase gradually to achieve a response.

  • Maximum recommended dose 54 mg in children, 72 mg in adults.

Side Effects: 
  • Most common are decreased appetite, weight loss, tics, and nausea.

  • All stimulants are required to carry a warning about the possibility of sudden death, primarily in children with pre-existing cardiac abnormalities.
  • Risk of stimulant abuse and diversion (Schedule II controlled substance).
  • Growth suppression, usually mild, is possible with all stimulants.
  • Pregnancy Category C.

Drug-drug Interactions: 

Avoid in combination with MAOIs.

  • Metabolized by the liver.

  • Lasts 8-12 hours.
  • Half-life is 3-4 hours.

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