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Methylphenidate Products

Methylphenidate has been a treatment for ADHD since the 1940's. There are now many different preparations with variances in duration of effect and manner of administration.

Brand Duration (hr) Available Strength (mg) Comments
ConcertaR 10-12 18, 27, 36, 54 Osmotically-released preparation; 22% short acting and remainder released over approximately 11 hr. cannot be sprinkled, MUST be swallowed whole.
DaytranaR 9

10, 15, 20 & 30

(12.5-37-5 cm2)

Available as a patch. Avoids first pass through liver, so dose is half the standard dose. Local irritation may be problematic.
Focalin XRR 9-10 5, 10, 15, 20 Available as d-isomer (active isomer) so dose is half the standard dose, 50% immediate release
Metadate CDR 9-10 10, 20, 30, 40, 50, 60 Can sprinkle; 40% immediate release
Ritalin LAR 9-10 10, 20, 30, 40 Can sprinkle; 50% immediate release



5, 10, 20 tab

Short acting preparation; useful in children with marked appetite suppression, or who need a little more after their long-acting preparation has worn off
MethylinR 4

2.5, 5, 10 mg chewable

5 mg/5 ml;

10 mg/5 ml

Useful for children who can not swallow pills; may require prior authorization from some insurance providers

Effective dose of methylphenidate is usually approximately 0.9-1.8 mg/kg/day for children ages 6- 12, with a maximum of 60 mg for sprinkle forms or 72 mg for Concerta. Doses for DaytranaR and Focalin XRR are half this dose (i.e. 0.5-0.9 mg/kg/day). In all cases dose is titrated to desired effect, with attention toward undesirable side-effects.