Ritalin

RITALIN- methylphenidate hydrochloride tablet
Novartis Pharmaceuticals Corporation

WARNING: ABUSE AND DEPENDENCE

CNS stimulants, including Ritalin and Ritalin-SR, other methylphenidate-containing products, and amphetamines, have a high potential for abuse and dependence. Assess the risk of abuse prior to prescribing, and monitor for signs of abuse and dependence while on therapy [see Warnings and Precautions (5.1), Drug Abuse and Dependence (9.2, 9.3)].

1 INDICATIONS AND USAGE

Ritalin and Ritalin-SR are indicated for the treatment of:

  • Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorders (ADHD) in pediatric patients 6 years and older and adults
  • Narcolepsy

2 DOSAGE AND ADMINISTRATION

2.1 Pretreatment Screening

Prior to treating pediatric patients and adults with central nervous system (CNS) stimulants, including Ritalin or Ritalin-SR, assess for the presence of cardiac disease (i.e., perform a careful history, including family history of sudden death or ventricular arrhythmia, and physical examination) [see Warnings and Precautions (5.2)].

Assess the risk of abuse prior to prescribing, and monitor for signs of abuse and dependence while on therapy. Maintain careful prescription records, educate patients about abuse, monitor for signs of abuse and overdose, and periodically reevaluate the need for Ritalin or Ritalin-SR use [see Boxed Warning, Warnings and Precautions (5.1), Drug Abuse and Dependence (9.2, 9.3)].

2.2 General Dosing Information

Ritalin Tablets

Pediatric Patients 6 years and Older: Start with 5 mg orally twice daily (before breakfast and lunch). Increase dosage gradually, in increments of 5-to 10-mg weekly. Daily dosage above 60 mg is not recommended.

Adults: Average dosage is 20 to 30 mg daily. Administer orally in divided doses 2 or 3 times daily, preferably 30 to 45 minutes before meals. Maximum total daily dosage is 60 mg. Patients who are unable to sleep if medication is taken late in the day should take the last dose before 6 p.m.

Ritalin-SR Tablets

Ritalin-SR tablets have a duration of action of approximately 8 hours. Therefore, Ritalin-SR tablets may be used in place of Ritalin tablets when the 8-hour dosage of Ritalin-SR corresponds to the titrated 8-hour dosage of Ritalin. Ritalin-SR tablets must be swallowed whole and never crushed or chewed.

Pharmacological treatment of ADHD may be needed for extended periods. Periodically reevaluate the long-term use of Ritalin and Ritalin-SR, and adjust dosage as needed.

2.3 Dose Reduction and Discontinuation

If paradoxical worsening of symptoms or other adverse reactions occur, reduce the dosage, or, if necessary, discontinue Ritalin or Ritalin-SR. If improvement is not observed after appropriate dosage adjustment over a one-month period, the drug should be discontinued.

3 DOSAGE FORMS AND STRENGTHS

Tablets

  • 5 mg, round, yellow, flat with CIBA monograpm on one side and NDC# 7 on the reverse side
  • 10 mg, round, pale green, biconvex with CIBA monograpm on one side and NDC# 3 and a partial bisection on the reverse side
  • 20 mg, round, pale yellow, biconvex with CIBA monograpm on one side and NDC# 34 and a partial bisection on the reverse side

Extended-release Tablets

  • 20 mg extended-release tablets, white to off-white, round, bicinvex, film coated with the ‘CIBA’ monograpm and ‘16’ on one side printed in black ink

4 CONTRAINDICATIONS

  • Hypersensitivity to methylphenidate or other components of Ritalin or Ritalin-SR. Hypersensitivity reactions, such as angioedema and anaphylactic reactions, have been reported in patients treated with methylphenidate [see Adverse Reactions (6.1)].
  • Concomitant treatment with monoamine oxidase inhibitors (MAOIs), or within 14 days following discontinuation of treatment with an MAOI, because of the risk of hypertensive crises [see Drug Interactions (7.1)].

5 WARNINGS AND PRECAUTIONS

5.1 Potential for Abuse and Dependence

CNS stimulants, including Ritalin and Ritalin-SR, other methylphenidate-containing products, and amphetamines, have a high potential for abuse and dependence. Assess the risk of abuse prior to prescribing, and monitor for signs of abuse and dependence while on therapy [see Boxed Warning, Drug Abuse and Dependence (9.2, 9.3)].

5.2 Serious Cardiovascular Reactions

Sudden death, stroke, and myocardial infarction have been reported in adults with CNS stimulant treatment at recommended doses. Sudden death has been reported in pediatric patients with structural cardiac abnormalities and other serious heart problems taking CNS stimulants at recommended doses for ADHD. Avoid use in patients with known serious structural cardiac abnormalities, cardiomyopathy, serious heart rhythm abnormalities, coronary artery disease, and other serious heart problems. Further evaluate patients who develop exertional chest pain, unexplained syncope, or arrhythmias during Ritalin and Ritalin-SR treatment.

5.3 Blood Pressure and Heart Rate Increases

CNS stimulants cause an increase in blood pressure (mean increase approximately 2 to 4 mmHg) and heart rate (mean increase approximately 3 to 6 beats per minute). Individuals may have larger increases. Monitor all patients for hypertension and tachycardia.

5.4 Psychiatric Adverse Reactions

Exacerbation of Preexisting Psychosis

CNS stimulants may exacerbate symptoms of behavior disturbance and thought disorder in patients with a preexisting psychotic disorder.

Induction of a Manic Episode in Patients with Bipolar Disorder

CNS stimulants may induce a manic or mixed mood episode in patients. Prior to initiating treatment, screen patients for risk factors for developing a manic episode (e.g., comorbid or history of depressive symptoms or a family history of suicide, bipolar disorder, or depression).

New Psychotic or Manic Symptoms

CNS stimulants, at recommended doses, may cause psychotic or manic symptoms (e.g., hallucinations, delusional thinking, or mania) in patients without a prior history of psychotic illness or mania. If such symptoms occur, consider discontinuing Ritalin and Ritalin-SR. In a pooled analysis of multiple short-term, placebo-controlled studies of CNS stimulants, psychotic or manic symptoms occurred in approximately 0.1% of CNS stimulant-treated patients, compared to 0 in placebo-treated patients.

5.5 Priapism

Prolonged and painful erections, sometimes requiring surgical intervention, have been reported with methylphenidate products in both pediatric and adult patients. Priapism was not reported with drug initiation but developed after some time on the drug, often subsequent to an increase in dose. Priapism has also appeared during a period of drug withdrawal (drug holidays or during discontinuation). Patients who develop abnormally sustained or frequent and painful erections should seek immediate medical attention.

5.6 Peripheral Vasculopathy, Including Raynaud’s Phenomenon

CNS stimulants, including Ritalin and Ritalin-SR, used to treat ADHD are associated with peripheral vasculopathy, including Raynaud’s phenomenon. Signs and symptoms are usually intermittent and mild; however, very rare sequelae include digital ulceration and/or soft tissue breakdown. Effects of peripheral vasculopathy, including Raynaud’s phenomenon, were observed in postmarketing reports at different times and at therapeutic doses in all age groups throughout the course of treatment. Signs and symptoms generally improve after reduction in dose or discontinuation of drug. Careful observation for digital changes is necessary during treatment with ADHD stimulants. Further clinical evaluation (e.g., rheumatology referral) may be appropriate for certain patients.

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