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What should I discuss with my healthcare provider before taking dexmethylphenidate (Focalin, Focalin XR)?
Do not use dexmethylphenidate if you have used an MAO inhibitor such as furazolidone (Furoxone), isocarboxazid (Marplan), phenelzine (Nardil), rasagiline (Azilect), selegiline (Eldepryl, Emsam, Zelapar), or tranylcypromine (Parnate) in the last 14 days. A dangerous drug interaction could occur, leading to serious side effects.
You should not take this medication if you are allergic to dexmethylphenidate or methylphenidate (Ritalin, Concerta), or if you have:
Some stimulants have caused sudden death in children and adolescents with serious heart problems or congenital heart defects. Before taking dexmethylphenidate, tell your doctor if you have any type of heart problems.
To make sure you can safely take dexmethylphenidate, tell your doctor if you have any of these other conditions:
FDA pregnancy category C. It is not known whether dexmethylphenidate will harm an unborn baby. Tell your doctor if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant while using this medication.
It is not known whether dexmethylphenidate passes into breast milk or if it could harm a nursing baby. Do not use this medication without telling your doctor if you are breast-feeding a baby.
Long-term use of dexmethylphenidate can slow a child's growth. Tell your doctor if the child using this medication is not growing or gaining weight properly.
Do not give this medicine to a child younger than 6 years old without medical advice.
Dexmethylphenidate may be habit forming and should be used only by the person for whom it was prescribed. Never share dexmethylphenidate with another person, especially someone with a history of drug abuse or addiction. Keep the medication in a place where others cannot get to it.
How should I take dexmethylphenidate (Focalin, Focalin XR)?
Take exactly as prescribed by your doctor. Do not take in larger or smaller amounts or for longer than recommended. Follow the directions on your prescription label.
Your doctor may occasionally change your dose to make sure you get the best results.
Take this medicine with a full glass of water.
This medication is usually taken in the morning before breakfast. You may take it with or without food.
You may open the dexmethylphenidate capsule and sprinkle the medicine into a spoonful of applesauce to make swallowing easier. Swallow right away without chewing. Do not save the mixture for later use. Discard the empty capsule.
Your doctor will need to check your progress on a regular basis. Do not miss any scheduled appointments.
Store at room temperature away from moisture and heat.
Keep track of the amount of medicine used from each new bottle. Dexmethylphenidate is a drug of abuse and you should be aware if anyone is using your medicine improperly or without a prescription.
Report Problems to the Food and Drug Administration
You are encouraged to report negative side effects of prescription drugs to the FDA. Visit the FDA MedWatch website or call 1-800-FDA-1088.
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