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What is Methylin?
Methylin is a central nervous system stimulant primarily used to treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children ages 6-12, adolescents, and adults up to age 65. Methylin may improve focus, and decrease impulsivity and hyperactive behavior — hallmark symptoms in some patients with the condition. It contains the same active ingredient as medications like Ritalin and Daytrana. According to the FDA, Methylin is a federally controlled substance (CII) because it can be abused or lead to dependence. It has not been studied in children under the age of 6.
The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends treatment with behavioral therapy before medication for children under the age of 6. For children ages 6 to 11, the AAP says “The primary care clinician should prescribe US Food and Drug Administration–approved medications for ADHD and/or evidence-based parent- and/or teacher-administered behavior therapy as treatment for ADHD, preferably both.” Likewise, the National Institute of Mental Health finds the most successful treatment plans use a combination of ADHD medication, like Methylin, and behavior therapies.
Methylin can also be used to treat narcolepsy.
How to Use Methylin
Before starting or refilling a Methylin prescription, read the medication guide included with your pills, as it may be updated with new information.
This guide should not replace a conversation with your doctor, who has a holistic view of your or your child’s medical history, other diagnoses, and other prescriptions. If you have questions, ask your doctor or pharmacist before you begin taking the medication.
Dosage for Methylin
As with all medications, follow your Methylin prescription instructions exactly. Taking Methylin after 6pm can disrupt sleep for some patients.
The optimal dosage varies patient by patient. It is not determined by age, weight, or height, but rather by how a person metabolizes the medication, and the condition treated. Your doctor may adjust your daily dosage until you or your child experiences the best response — that is, the lowest dosage at which you experience the greatest improvement in symptoms without side effects.
Methylin is available in two formulations:
- Chewable Tablet (Methylin ER): Taken two to three times daily, 30 to 45 minutes before a meal. Chew each tablet well and swallow with at least a full glass of water or another liquid. Tablets not taken with enough liquid can swell and become a choking risk. Available in 2.5 mg, 5 mg, and 10mg dosages.
- Oral Solution: Colorless, grape-flavored liquid, taken two to three times daily, 30 to 45 minutes before a meal. The liquid should be measured with the included device and swallowed entirely with water or another liquid. Dosage does not typically exceed 60 mg per day.
Do not drink alcohol while taking this medication, as it can cause the medicine to be released too quickly. Taking Methylin after eating a high-fat meal can delay the release of the medication, and therapeutic effects.
During treatment, your doctor may periodically ask you to stop taking your Methylin so that he or she can monitor ADHD symptoms; check vital statistics including blood, heart, and blood pressure; or evaluate height and weight. If any problems are found, your doctor may recommend discontinuing treatment.
Side Effects Associated with Methylin
The most common side effects of Methylin are as follows: nervousness, trouble sleeping, headache, stomach ache, fast heartbeat, nausea, decreased appetite, dizziness, and weight loss.
Other serious side effects include slowing of growth in children, seizures, priapism, and eyesight changes or blurred vision.
If side effects are bothersome, or do not go away, talk to your doctor. Most people taking this medication do not experience any of these side effects.
Report to your doctor any heart-related problems or a family history of heart and blood pressure problems. Patients with structural cardiac abnormalities and other serious heart problems have experienced sudden death, stroke, heart attack, and increased blood pressure while taking Methylin. Stimulants can increase blood pressure and heart rate. Physicians should monitor these vital signs closely during treatment. Call your doctor immediately if you or your child experiences warning signs such as chest pain, shortness of breath, or fainting while taking Methylin.