The lawsuits involving Concerta state the manufacturer of the drug failed to warn patients and physicians of the increased risks of extreme suicidal thoughts caused when younger people take the medication. Plaintiffs attorneys argue that if the manufacturer had properly warned of the risks, teens would have been prescribed a different treatment for their ADD.
What is the Purpose of Concerta
Concerta is a prescription medication used to treat Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) and/or Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). Over the past decade, prescriptions to treat ADD/ADHD have soared as ADD/ADHD has become a more common diagnosis – especially in school-aged and pre-adolescent children.
Children are often diagnosed with ADD and/or ADHD whenever they exhibit signs of inattention, hyperactivity, impulsiveness, and/or an inability to focus on tasks such as schoolwork or homework.
Due to the very subjective nature of identification and diagnosis of the disease, the frequency and manner in which the disease is diagnosed often varies doctor-by-doctor. What is clear, however, is that it has become one of the most commonly diagnosed disorders for children in the United States. Around 5.9 million children in the US are estimated to have ADHD, including 13.5% of boys and 5.4% of girls.
The chemical name for Concerta is “Methylphenidate.” The drug acts as a stimulant for the central nervous system and affects chemicals in the brain. Methylphenidate-based drugs are one of the most commonly prescribed drugs for ADD/ADHD. Concerta is distinguishable from other types of Methylphenidate drugs because of its “time released” formula.
What is ADHD
ADHD is a childhood neurodevelopmental disorder characterized by excessive activity, impulsiveness, inappropriate behavior and inability to pay attention and to focus on tasks. With children, ADHD often leads to poor school performance and problems with interpersonal relationships.
ADHD is commonly associated with other disorders such as learning disabilities, anxiety disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and Tourette syndrome.
Is Concerta and Ritalin the Same Drug
Concerta and Ritalin both contain the same active ingredient, methylphenidate. However, these two medications work quite differently. Concerta is a long-acting drug which is taken only once per day since it acts for 10-12 hours.
It steadily increases dopamine as it’s gradually released in the bloodstream. Ritalin, on the other hand, is a short-acting drug which increases norepinephrine and dopamine levels almost immediately after the assumption.
Although Concerta is often preferred for its more convenient once-daily dosage, Ritalin may be helpful for patients who need immediate symptom relief.
Concerta Injuries & Side Effects
One of the most serious and devastating potential side effects and risks caused through the use Concerta is extreme suicidal thoughts, especially in children under twenty-one.
|Additional Potential Side Effects|
|Disturbed Sleep||Drug Addiction/Abuse|
Concerta Lawsuit News
Leanne Bessner was an attractive, perky and popular fifteen-year-old girl from an average, stable, middle-class family. Among other activities, she played on her high school’s basketball team. She was also diagnosed with “Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder,” or ADHD. In August 2005, young Ms. Bessner was prescribed Concerta, also known as methylphenidate hci, a drug that, like Ritalin, is intended to calm children down and get them to focus. Two months later, on October 9, she committed suicide by hanging herself. To read more, click Drug Safety NewsBig Pharma Does It Again: ADD/ADHD “Treatment” Is Driving Young People to Suicide:
It’s the same old story, again and again. In a mad rush to maximize revenues and increase profits, Big Pharma creates “disorders” and “diseases,” then quickly develops “treatments,” which are then aggressively marketed to a public desperate for a quick and easy fix. In this case, the “disorder” is ADD/ADHD – and the latest “treatment” is called methylphenidate hci – currently being marketed by our old friends at Janssen Pharmaceutica, a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson as Concerta. To read more, click The Ring of Fire Network
Aggression, mood swings, abnormal sex drive and suicidal thoughts are common side effects of prolonged and intense abuse of drugs like Adderall, Ritalin and Concerta. To read more, click Education DiveHealth Canada: ADHD Drugs to Come with Suicide Warning, Includes Adderall XR, Ritalin, Concerta:
“New information has emerged since to suggest that the risk of suicidal thoughts and behaviours may apply to all other ADHD drugs,” Health Canada said in a press release. Research has yet to prove a causal relationship between the ADHD medications and suicide risks, but patients with ADHD might have an increased risk of suicide and suicidal thoughts, according to the CBC. It is also possible that other mental health conditions are likely to be associated with ADHD symptoms. To read more, click InquisitrLatest ADHD Medication Concerns Renew Talks of Alternatives to Try First:
“CCHR International, a mental health watchdog group, reports that there are confirming sources in medical literature to suggest that stimulants can be linked to paranoid delusions, paranoid psychosis, hypomanic and manic symptoms, hallucinations, withdrawal, aggressiveness, insomnia, and decreased REM sleep. Last year, Health Canada announced that several ADHD medications would need to be labelled with stronger warnings including increased risks of suicide after reports of suicide attempts and suicidal thoughts in association with the medications Concerta and Ritalin and even Adderall." To read more, click Inquisitr
For additional news stories, click Levin Law Concerta News
Concerta Lawsuit Videos
FDA and Scientific Studies Regarding Concerta
Mortality associated with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) drug treatment: a retrospective cohort study of children, adolescents and young adults using the general practice research databaseThe study found a 162-fold increase in suicide rates for the under-14 age group in patients taking ADHD medications, including methylphenidate (the same active ingredient found in Concerta), when compared to the general population. The study also notes that, “under-reporting was likely to underestimate the incidence of these events.” To read more, click Drug Safety Journal
Hallucinations and Other Psychotic Symptoms Associated With the Use of Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder Drugs in ChildrenWe analyzed data from 49 randomized, controlled clinical trials in the pediatric development programs for these products. A total of 11 psychosis/mania adverse events occurred during 743 person-years of double-blind treatment with these drugs, and no comparable adverse events occurred in a total of 420 person-years of placebo exposure in the same trials. To read more, click Pediatrics
ADHD Drugs—Concerta Studies: For a comprehensive review of the studies involving Concerta, click CCHR International
Concerta Recall Information
As of this time, there has not been a recall of Concerta for issues related to children and suicide. Incredibly, despite case reports of suicidal thoughts in children taking Concerta, the United States drug label does not even warn doctors and patients of the risk.
In other parts of the world, the government is addressing this known and serious risk. For example, in 2015 Canada required a warning for Concerta that specifically addresses the drug’s potential to increase the risk of suicide. The Canadian product label warns that patients should be monitored at every adjustment dose of the drug and at least every 6 months and at every doctor’s visit for development or worsening of psychiatric disorders.
Additionally, the Canadian product label warns about suicidal tendencies and advises that patients with emergent suicidal thoughts or behavior during treatment should be evaluated immediately by a physician.
Concerta Settlement Information
As of this time, there have been no large group settlements involving Concerta and a potential link to teen suicide. Litigation likes this takes many years to resolve, with teams of lawyers spending millions of dollars trying to determine exactly what occurred, and how it could have been prevented. Generally, large groups of settlements do not occur until such time as a few cases are tried before a jury, and the manufacturer is able to more thoroughly understand its financial risk.