ADHD Medications: Side-Effects of Straterra®, Quillivant®, Concerta® & Ritalin® - The Reynolds Clinic LLC

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ADHD Medications: Side-Effects of Straterra®, Quillivant®, Concerta® & Ritalin®


Straterra® is meant primarily for use in older teens and adults to control and help the effects of ADHD. However, medication is not always the best option, because of the various side-effects that may alter your mental state, and physical health in other ways. Let’s take a look at some of these side-effects and see if there is a better alternative to medications.

  • Constipation
  • Dry mouth
  • Nausea
  • Decreased appetite
  • Dizziness
  • Sexual side-effects
  • Problems passing urine
  • Long lasting erection


Children have seen different, more serious side-effects, when taking this drug, which is why it is not recommended for them. Their side-effects when taking Strattera® are as follows:

  • Suicidal thoughts and actions
  • Anxiety
  • Agitation
  • Aggressiveness
  • Panic attacks
  • Trouble sleeping
  • Irritability
  • Hostility
  • Impulsivity
  • Restlessness
  • Mania
  • Depression
  • Affect his/her ability to drive or operate machinery


If your child or teenager experiences an increase or sudden change in any of these symptoms, please talk to your child’s doctor to help monitor for suicidal thoughts, and consider taking them off of the medications and moving to something more natural, including activities that can help.


Additionally, Straterra® has been known to cause liver issues with some patients. Please contact your doctor if you notice any of the following in your child or teenager:

  • Itching
  • Right upper belly Pain
  • Dark urine
  • Yellow skin or eyes
  • Unexplained flu like symptoms
  • Heart problems – including heart attack, stroke, and high blood pressure. Check for heart problems before putting a child – or adult – on Straterra®
  • New mental and psychological problems in children


Additionally, don’t take Strattera® if you have the following health conditions – an eye problem called narrow angle glaucoma or a rare tumor called pheochromocytoma.


Quillivant®: (Side-Effects)

Quillivant XR® is the first of its kind. This once-daily extended-release formulation of liquid methylphenidate, is made specifically for those who struggle to swallow pills.


Quivillant® is a stimulant amphetamine, and as such should be monitored closely for abuse, especially since it is recommended for children and teens.


Additional side-effects in children include:

  • Weight loss
  • Stunted growth (long term)
  • Decreased appetite
  • Nausea
  • Abdominal pain
  • Dyspepsia
  • Dry mouth
  • Vomiting
  • Insomnia
  • Anxiety
  • Nervousness
  • Restlessness
  • Affect lability
  • Agitation
  • Irritability
  • Dizziness/Vertigo
  • Tremor
  • Blurred vision
  • Increased blood pressure/heart rate
  • Tachycardia
  • Palpitations
  • Hyperhidrosis
  • Pyrexia


Adults who have taken the recommended dosage of this medication have experienced the following dangerous side-effects:

  • Stroke
  • Myocardial infarction
  • Priapism
  • Raynaud’s Phenomenon


Additional side-effects have been recorded in less than 2% of patients, which will not be reported here.


In children with heart conditions sudden death has been known to occur. Patients with the following heart conditions should not use Quillivant®.

  • Structural cardiac abnormalities
  • Cardiomyopathy
  • Serious cardiac arrhythmias
  • Coronary artery disease


Concerta®: (Side-Effects)

Concerta is a spin-off of the ADHD medication Ritalin®. The biggest difference however, between these two drugs is the length of time it is effective in the body. While Ritalin® must be taken every 4-6 hours to remain effective, Concerta® can be effective for up to twelve.
Side-effects and the percentage of people taking Concerta® that they affect, are listed below:

  • Headache – 14%
  • Upper respiratory tract infection – 8%
  • Stomachache – 7%
  • Vomiting – 4%
  • Loss of appetite – 4%
  • Sleeplessness – 4%
  • Increased cough – 4%
  • Sore throat – 4%
  • Sinusitis – 3%
  • Dizziness – 2%


Other side-effects will mimic Ritalin®, which is next on our list. Also, children who have any of the following issues should not take Concerta®:

  • Agitation
  • Hypersensitivity to Methylphenidate
  • Glaucoma
  • Tics
  • Children under the age of 6


Ritalin®: (Side-Effects)

Ritalin® is a medication that has most often been prescribed to children, but it is considered safe for all ages. The most frequent side-effects are found below. If any of these occur, contact your doctor.

  • Fast heartbeat
  • Chest pain
  • Fever
  • Joint pain
  • Skin rash or hives
  • Black, tarry stools
  • Blood in the urine or stools
  • Blurred vision or other changes in vision
  • Convulsions
  • Crusting, dryness, or flaking of the skin
  • Muscle cramps
  • Pinpoint red spots on the skin
  • Scaling, severe redness, soreness, or swelling of the skin
  • Uncontrolled vocal outbursts or tics (uncontrolled and repeated body movements)
  • Unusual bleeding or bruising


Many of the medications that are used to treat ADHD are worse for the patient than ADHD itself. Please exercise extreme caution if you choose to use any of the mentioned, or any other medications to treat ADHD. There are many other, more natural methods of treating ADHD that we highly recommend. Check our next post for more information on these natural treatment methods.