Concerta Side Effects | Common & Rare

Concerta (brand name for methylphenidate) is a central nervous system (CNS) stimulant medication used to treat symptoms of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

This specific ADHD medication is offered as an extended-release tablet, meaning that the medication releases into your body throughout the day. It is also sometimes used to treat sleeping disorders such as narcolepsy.

Concerta is considered a schedule II controlled substance according to the United States Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA). Although it helps to treat ADHD, Concerta belongs to a class of substances with a high potential for abuse.

In addition to this, Concerta can cause a number of side effects. Concerta side effects in adults can differ from side effects in adolescents. This can also be the case with Concerta side effects in females compared to the side effects in males.

Common Side Effects Of Concerta

When a person takes a central nervous system stimulant such as Concerta, there are a number of common side effects one might experience. According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse (NIDA), Concerta increases the activity of dopamine and norepinephrine in the brain.

Some of the common side effects of Concerta use may include:

  • euphoria or a “rush”
  • dry mouth
  • nausea
  • weight loss
  • increased breathing
  • heartburn
  • loss of appetite
  • nervousness
  • abdominal pain
  • irritability
  • blurred vision
  • muscle twitching or tics
  • diarrhea
  • trouble sleeping

Rare Side Effects Of Concerta

In addition to the common side effects that occur when Concerta is taken, a variety of serious side effects may also take place.

Men, women, and children 6 years of age or older are approved to take Concerta. However, all ages can be impacted in different ways when it comes to Concerta abuse.

Cardiovascular Problems

According to the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA), adolescents and adults who take Concerta may experience sudden death if they have heart problems or cardiac abnormalities. In adults, this can take the form of chest pain as well as serious heart problems.

Some of the side effects associated with cardiovascular issues include high blood pressure as well as heart rate fluctuations. Adults with heart abnormalities can experience a stroke or heart attack.

Drug Interactions

Although it assists in treating ADHD symptoms, Concerta can cause harm to one’s body if combined with other drugs.

When a person combines a prescription stimulant with other medications, drug interactions can occur, leading to life-threatening health concerns or allergic reactions.

For instance, Concerta should not be combined with other prescription stimulant drugs such as Ritalin or Adderall. You should always speak with a healthcare professional before mixing prescription drugs.

Some of the other drugs not to be combined with Concerta include certain supplements and vitamins as well as antidepressants.

An antidepressant that contains monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs) should be avoided. If MAO inhibitors are combined with Concerta, a high increase in blood pressure may occur.

Side Effects Of Concerta In Women

A rare side effect that specifically impacts women includes drugs passed through breast milk to babies. If a woman is pregnant, she should speak with her doctor before taking Concerta as abnormalities or malformations may occur, especially if the drug is abused.

The act of breastfeeding can inadvertently pass on the drug to the child, causing potential development problems.

Side Effects Of Concerta In Men

In men, one of the rare side effects include priapism, a prolonged and painful erection. Painful erections may occur in both men and children. If a person experiences this type of erection, they should seek medical attention right away.

Medical Conditions

There are a number of pre-existing medical conditions that should be taken into account before you are prescribed Concerta. Be sure to speak with your healthcare provider if:

  • you have a history of Tourette’s Syndrome which can make tics and muscle twitching side effects worse
  • you suffer from mental health issues such as bipolar disorder which, when combined with Concerta, can lead to potential psychosis or severe depression
  • you have a family history of circulation problems or Raynaud’s Phenomenon
  • you have a family history of a substance use disorder or drug abuse
  • you suffer from glaucoma or an overactive thyroid

If you or a loved one are participating in drug use, healthcare professionals at a treatment center can assist you on your road to recovery. To learn about our outpatient rehab program, please contact us today.

Written by
Northeast Addition Editorial Team

Published on

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This page does not provide medical advice.

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