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Methylphenidate Hydrochloride (Methylphenidate 5mg tablets)



Information specific to: Methylphenidate 5mg tablets when used in Attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder.

Methylphenidate hydrochloride (Mee-thile-fen-id-ate hi-droh-clor-ride) is a medicine which is used in attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder.

The information in this Medicine Guide for Methylphenidate Hydrochloride varies according to the condition being treated and the particular preparation used.

Your medicine

Methylphenidate hydrochloride is used as part of a programme of treatment for people who have attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder. Methylphenidate hydrochloride works by affecting certain chemicals in the brain which may help to reduce some of the symptoms of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder.

Other information about Methylphenidate hydrochloride:

  • your doctor may start you on a low dose of this medicine and then increase the dose depending on how you respond to treatment
  • do not take Methylphenidate hydrochloride within four hours before bedtime. This is to prevent disturbances in falling asleep
  • if your symptoms get worse or do not improve within one month of starting treatment with Methylphenidate hydrochloride, contact your prescriber

Do not share your medicine with other people. It may not be suitable for them and may harm them.

The pharmacy label on your medicine tells you how much medicine you should take. It also tells you how often you should take your medicine. This is the dose that you and your prescriber have agreed you should take. You should not change the dose of your medicine unless you are told to do so by your prescriber.

If you feel that the medicine is making you unwell or you do not think it is working, then talk to your prescriber.

Whether this medicine is suitable for you

Methylphenidate hydrochloride is not suitable for everyone and some people should never use it. Other people should only use it with special care. It is important that the person prescribing this medicine knows your full medical history.

Your prescriber may only prescribe this medicine with special care or may not prescribe it at all if you:

  • are about to have surgery
  • are abusing alcohol or have abused alcohol in the past
  • are allergic or sensitive to or have had a reaction to any of the ingredients in the medicine
  • are an adult
  • are an alcoholic
  • are elderly
  • are emotionally unstable
  • are feeling agitated, anxious or tense
  • are taking MAO inhibitor or have had MAO inhibitor in the past 14 days
  • have a drug addiction
  • have angina
  • have anorexia nervosa
  • have attempted suicide
  • have been dependent on drugs in the past
  • have been treated with Methylphenidate hydrochloride over a long period of time
  • have behavioural problems
  • have cerebrovascular problems
  • have certain types of heart problems
  • have glaucoma
  • have high blood pressure
  • have kidney problems
  • have liver problems
  • have or have a family history of tics, Tourette's syndrome or other movement disorders
  • have or have had a personality disorder
  • have or have had bipolar disorder
  • have or have had depression
  • have or have had epilepsy
  • have or have had mania
  • have or have had mood disorders
  • have or have had psychosis
  • have or have had schizophrenia
  • have or have had seizures
  • have or have had thoughts of committing suicide
  • have phaeochromocytoma
  • have psychiatric problems
  • have risk factors for bipolar disorder such as having a family history of: bipolar disorder, depression or suicide
  • have thyroid problems

Furthermore the prescriber may only prescribe this medicine with special care or may not prescribe it at all for a child under the age of six years.

As part of the process of assessing suitability to take this medicine a prescriber may also arrange tests:

  • to determine whether or not the medicine is suitable and whether it must be prescribed with extra care
  • to check that this medicine is having the desired effect
  • to check that this medicine is not having any undesired effects

Over time it is possible that Methylphenidate hydrochloride can become unsuitable for some people, or they may become unsuitable for it. If at any time it appears that Methylphenidate hydrochloride has become unsuitable, it is important that the prescriber is contacted immediately.


Alcohol can interact with certain medicines.

In the case of Methylphenidate hydrochloride:

  • this medicine may interact with alcohol

It is best to avoid drinking alcohol while you are taking this medicine.


Medicines can interact with certain foods. In some cases, this may be harmful and your prescriber may advise you to avoid certain foods.

In the case of Methylphenidate hydrochloride:

  • there are no specific foods that you must exclude from your diet when taking Methylphenidate hydrochloride

Driving and operating machinery

When taking any medicine you should be aware that it might interfere with your ability to drive or operate machinery safely.

In the case of Methylphenidate hydrochloride:

  • this medicine could affect your ability to drive or operate machinery

You should see how this medicine affects you before you judge whether you are safe to drive or operate machinery. If you are in any doubt about whether you should drive or operate machinery, talk to your prescriber.

Family planning and pregnancy

Most medicines, in some way, can affect the development of a baby in the womb. The effect on the baby differs between medicines and also depends on the stage of pregnancy that you have reached when you take the medicine.

In the case of Methylphenidate hydrochloride:

  • the use of this medicine during pregnancy is not recommended. You should only take this medicine during pregnancy if your doctor thinks that you need it

You should discuss your personal circumstances with your doctor if you are pregnant or want to become pregnant. This is so that together you can make a decision about what treatment you may need during your pregnancy.

You should discuss whether there are any other medicines which you could take during pregnancy which would treat your condition.


Certain medicines can pass into breast milk and may reach your baby through breast-feeding.

In the case of Methylphenidate hydrochloride:

  • women who are breast-feeding must not take this medicine

Before you have your baby you should discuss breast-feeding with your doctor or midwife. If you wish to breast-feed you should discuss with your prescriber whether there are any other medicines you could take which would also allow you to breast-feed. You should not stop this medicine without taking advice from your doctor.

Taking other medicines

If you are taking more than one medicine they may interact with each other. At times your prescriber may decide to use medicines that interact, in other cases this may not be appropriate.

The decision to use medicines that interact depends on your specific circumstances. Your prescriber may decide to use medicines that interact, if it is believed that the benefits of taking the medicines together outweigh the risks. In such cases, it may be necessary to alter your dose or monitor you more closely.

Tell your prescriber the names of all the medicines that you are taking so that they can consider all possible interactions. This includes all the medicines which have been prescribed by your GP, hospital doctor, dentist, nurse, health visitor, midwife or pharmacist. You must also tell your prescriber about medicines which you have bought over the counter without prescriptions.

The following medicines may interact with Methylphenidate hydrochloride:

  • clonidine
  • phenobarbital
  • phenytoin
  • primidone

The following types of medicine may interact with Methylphenidate hydrochloride:

  • alpha agonists
  • anticonvulsants
  • antihypertensives
  • antipsychotics
  • coumarin anticoagulants
  • dopaminergics
  • halogenated anaesthetics
  • medicines that elevate blood pressure
  • monoamine oxidase inhibitors
  • selective serotonin re-uptake inhibitors
  • tricyclic antidepressants

If you are taking Methylphenidate hydrochloride and one of the above medicines or types of medicines, make sure your prescriber knows about it.

Complementary preparations and vitamins

Medicines can interact with complementary preparations and vitamins. In general, there is not much information available about interactions between medicines and complementary preparations or vitamins.

If you are planning to take or are already taking any complementary preparations and vitamins you should ask your prescriber whether there are any known interactions with Methylphenidate hydrochloride.

Your prescriber can advise whether it is appropriate for you to take combinations that are known to interact. They can also discuss with you the possible effect that the complementary preparations and vitamins may have on your condition.

If you experience any unusual effects while taking this medicine in combination with complementary preparations and vitamins, you should tell your prescriber.

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