Healthdirect Free Australian health advice you can count on.

Medical problem? Call 1800 022 222. If you need urgent medical help, call triple zero immediately

healthdirect Australia is a free service where you can talk to a nurse or doctor who can help you know what to do.

beginning of content

Brand name: Ritalin LA TM

Active ingredients: methylphenidate

What it is used for

Ritalin 10 tablets and Ritalin LA capsules are indicated for the treatment of ADHD. Ritalin 10 tablets are also indicated for the treatment of narcolepsy. Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) ADHD was previously known as attention-deficit disorder. Other terms used to describe this behavioural syndrome include: minimal brain dysfunction in children, hyperkinetic child syndrome, minimal brain damage, minimal cerebral dysfunction, minor cerebral dysfunction and psycho-organic syndrome of children. Ritalin 10 / Ritalin LA are indicatedas an integral part of a total treatment program for ADHD that may include other measures (psychological, educational and social) for patients with this syndrome. Stimulants are not intended for use in the patient who exhibits symptoms secondary to environmental factors and/or other primary psychiatric disorders, including psychosis. Special diagnostic considerations for ADHD in children: The aetiology of this syndrome is unknown and there is no single diagnostic test. Adequate diagnosis requires the use, not only of medical, but also of psychological, educational and social resources. Characteristics commonly reported include: chronic history of short attention span, distractibility, emotional lability, impulsivity, moderate to severe hyperactivity, minor neurological signs and an abnormal EEG. Learning may or may not be impaired. The diagnosis must be based upon a complete history and evaluation of the child and not solely on the presence of one or more of these characteristics. Drug treatment is not indicated for all children with this syndrome. Stimulants are not intended for use in children who exhibit symptoms secondary to environmental factors (e.g. child abuse in particular) or primary psychiatric disorders. Appropriate educational placement is essential and psychosocial intervention is generally necessary. When remedial measures alone are insufficient, the decision to prescribe stimulant medicine will depend upon the physician's assessment of the chronicity and severity of the child's symptoms. Continuation of treatment in adolescent and special diagnostic considerations for ADHD in adults: There is limited information to guide clinicians about how long older adolescents should continue to receive treatment with drugs for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). The decision should be based on the extent to which symptoms of ADHD and social functioning have improved to a point that medication is no longer needed. If older adolescents have been largely symptom-free for a year and are functioning well, a trial without medication is warranted. This should be undertaken at times of low stress such as during holidays or in a period when a school routine is well established. ADHD needs to be considered in adults who present with longstanding symptoms suggestive of ADHD (inattention, impulsivity, disorganisation) that appear to have started in childhood and are persisting into adult life. Further, people with personality disorder and/or problems with drug use accompanied by a significant level of impulsivity and inattention should be referred for evaluation by a psychiatrist with the training and skills required to assess and treat ADHD. This expertise is necessary due to the overlap of ADHD symptoms with anxiety, mood and personality disorders. Narcolepsy The symptoms include daytime sleepiness, inappropriate sleep episodes and rapidly occurring loss of voluntary muscle tone. Ritalin 10 is effective for symptoms of sleepiness but not for loss of voluntary muscle tone.

How to take it

You should seek medical advice in relation to medicines and use only as directed by a healthcare professional.

  • The way to take this medicine: Oral
  • Store below 30 degrees Celsius
  • Keep Container Tightly Closed/Airtight
  • Shelf lifetime is 18 Months.

Always read the label. If symptoms persist see your healthcare professional.

Visual appearance

White to off-white beads in light brown opaque hard gelatin capsule with "NVR" on cap and "R10" on a white opaque body in tan ink.

Images are the copyright of the Pharmacy Guild of Australia

Do I need a prescription?

This medicine requires authorisation for prescription from your doctor.It is Schedule 8 : Controlled Drug.

Over 65?

This medicine contains the active ingredients:

If you are over 65 years of age, there may be specific risks and recommendations for use of this medicine. Please discuss your individual circumstances with your pharmacist, doctor or health professional. For more information read our page on medication safety for older people.

Pregnant or planning a pregnancy?

For the active ingredient methylphenidate

You should seek advice from your doctor or pharmacist about taking this medicine. They can help you balance the risks and the benefits of this medicine during pregnancy.

Download leaflet

For side effects, taking other medicines and more

Download consumer medicine information leaflet (pdf) from the Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) website

Reporting side effects

You can help ensure medicines are safe by reporting the side effects you experience.

You can report side effects to your doctor, or directly at www.tga.gov.au/reporting-problems

Back to top back to top

Need more information?

These trusted information partners have more on this topic.

Healthdirect 24hr 7 days a week hotline

24 hour health advice you can count on

1800 022 222

Government Accredited with over 140 information partners

We are a government-funded service, providing quality, approved health information and advice

Australian Government, health department logo ACT Government logo New South Wales government, health department logo Northen Territory Government logo Government of South Australia, health department logo Tasmanian government logo Government of Western Australia, health department logo