The safety of Concerta (methylphenidate), a central nervous system stimulant commonly used to treat Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) in young children, has recently been called into question after the FDA released data showing a link between ADHD medication use and a risk of sudden death.
On February 9, 2006, the FDA voted 8 to 7 in favor of requiring the most serious type of warning label for Concerta, Adderall, Ritalin and all other ADHD drugs. The black box warning is being added in response to the FDA findings that suggest there is a strong link between the use of ADHD medications and an increased risk of sudden death and serious cardiovascular problems, including heart attacks.
The FDA found more than 200 reports of psychotic behavior episodes and 16 deaths in children taking the drug since the medication was introduced to the public over five years ago. Other drugs in Concerta class, such as Ritalin, Adderall and Strattera, were found to cause similar effects.
Since being introduced to the market, Concerta has quickly become one of the most commonly prescribed medications used to treat Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder. However, as more youngsters use Concerta, the number of adverse reactions continues to rise.
Documented Concerta Side Effects:
- Mood changes, delusions, depersonalization, hallucinations
- Increased heartbeat, blood pressure
- Bloody stools
- Uncontrolled movements: tics, Tourette Syndrome
- Chest Pain
- Skin inflammation and peeling
- Vision impairments
- Loss of appetite
- Rapid weight loss
Concerta is Schedule II controlled substance, meaning: 1) it has a high potential for abuse, 2) it is currently accepted as a medical treatment in the United States with severe restrictions, and 3) abuse of this drug may lead to severe psychological and physical dependence.
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For the dangerous side effects of ADHD medications and alternative treatment see the following articles:
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