Illicit use of Methylphenidate: the other side of the medical prescription

Authors

  • Sandra Vanessa Dias Pereira Department of Pediatric, Hospital Pediátrico Integrado, Centro Hospitalar de São João.
  • Ana Maria Ferreira Department of Pediatric, Centro Hospitalar Entre Douro e Vouga
  • Ana Azevedo Department of Pediatric, Centro Hospitalar Entre Douro e Vouga
  • Cláudia Barroso Division of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Department of Psychiatry, Centro Hospitalar Entre Douro e Vouga
  • Virgínia Monteiro Department of Pediatric, Centro Hospitalar Entre Douro e Vouga

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.25753/BirthGrowthMJ.v27.i2.13022

Keywords:

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, illicit use, intoxication, methylphenidate, pediatric age

Abstract

Introduction/Objective: Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder is the most common neurobehavioral disorder of childhood. Parallel to the progress in the diagnosis, the prescription of psychostimulants, namely Methylphenidate (MPH), has also increased. The aim of this review is to promote reflection and debate on this issue, displaying its actual relevance in order to prevent and properly diagnose such cases in Portugal.
Results: In recent years, illicit use or misuse of MPH for recreational purposes or as a cognitive stimulant to improve academic achievement, has become a focus of concern. Easier accessibility, false belief that it is safer than illegal drugs because it’s prescription based as well a less social stigmatization promote this practice. Thus, treatment with MPH requires adequate medical indication and supervision, not only for its potential cardiovascular side effects and exacerbation of psychiatric disorders, but also due to the risk of illicit use and intoxication.
Conclusion: This article reviews the literature concerning MPH misuse. In order to counteract this emerging problem, of still unknown proportions in Portugal, it is crucial to invest in the information and awareness of adolescents, parents, health professionals, and educational community in general.

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Published

2018-07-13

How to Cite

Pereira, S. V. D., Ferreira, A. M., Azevedo, A., Barroso, C., & Monteiro, V. (2018). Illicit use of Methylphenidate: the other side of the medical prescription. NASCER E CRESCER - BIRTH AND GROWTH MEDICAL JOURNAL, 27(2), 98–104. https://doi.org/10.25753/BirthGrowthMJ.v27.i2.13022

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