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Review: could Focalin cause Memory impairment?

Summary: Memory impairment could be caused by Focalin, especially for people who are male, 10-19 old, have been taking the drug for 1 - 6 months, also take Focalin xr, and have Depression.

We study 1,126 people who have side effects while taking Focalin from FDA and social media. Among them, 19 have Memory impairment. Find out below who they are, when they have Memory impairment and more.

On Apr, 11, 2014: 1,058 people reported to have side effects when taking Focalin. Among them, 19 people (1.80%) have Memory Impairment. They amount to 0.00% of all the 460,857 people who have Memory Impairment on eHealthMe.

Trend of Memory impairment in Focalin reports

Time on Focalin when people have Memory impairment * :

< 1 month1 - 6 months6 - 12 months1 - 2 years2 - 5 years5 - 10 years10+ years
Memory impairment11.11%33.33%22.22%0.00%22.22%11.11%0.00%

Gender of people who have Memory impairment when taking Focalin * :

Memory impairment43.48%56.52%

Age of people who have Memory impairment when taking Focalin * :

Memory impairment0.00%14.29%28.57%0.00%14.29%21.43%7.14%14.29%

Severity of Memory impairment when taking Focalin ** :

leastmoderateseveremost severe
Memory impairment16.67%50.00%33.33%0.00%

How people recovered from Memory impairment ** :

while on the drugafter off the drugnot yet
Memory impairment0.00%33.33%66.67%

Top conditions involved for these people * :

  1. Depression (9 people, 47.37%)
  2. Attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (4 people, 21.05%)
  3. Insomnia (3 people, 15.79%)
  4. Arthritis (3 people, 15.79%)
  5. Diabetes mellitus (2 people, 10.53%)

Top co-used drugs for these people * :

  1. Focalin xr (10 people, 52.63%)
  2. Aleve (5 people, 26.32%)
  3. Prozac (5 people, 26.32%)
  4. Acetaminophen and hydrocodone bitartrate (3 people, 15.79%)
  5. Cephalexin (3 people, 15.79%)

* Approximation only. Some reports may have incomplete information.

** Reports from social media are used.

How to use the study: print a copy of the study and bring it to your health teams to ensure drug risks and benefits are fully discussed and understood.

Related topic: Focalin, Memory impairment

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On eHealthMe, Focalin (dexmethylphenidate hydrochloride) is often used for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder. Find out below the conditions Focalin is used for, how effective it is, and any alternative drugs that you can use to treat those same conditions.

What is Focalin used for and how effective is it:

Other drugs that are used to treat the same conditions:

Could it be a symptom from a condition:

Drugs in real world that are associated with:

Could your condition cause it?

Comments from related studies:

  • From this study (12 months ago):

  • My doctor hasn't really told me about what side effects I could expect from my medication, so I'd like to know so that if I get a side effect I'll know my medication is causing it and can fix it.


    K Pearson on May, 5, 2013:

    My 7 yr old was on 25mg Focalin XR and the side affects he developed was a sever head shake. It looked like he was always saying No. Sometimes it was so severe that you could hear his lips flutter. He also complained about stomache aches.


  • From this study (3 years ago):

  • depakote side effect seem to increase on the focalin. currently lowering dose possibly changing to new rx. Many memory problems in school on depakote


NOTE: The study is based on active ingredients and brand name. Other drugs that have the same active ingredients (e.g. generic drugs) are NOT considered.

WARNING: Please DO NOT STOP MEDICATIONS without first consulting a physician since doing so could be hazardous to your health.

DISCLAIMER: All material available on is for informational purposes only, and is not a substitute for medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment provided by a qualified healthcare provider. All information is observation-only, and has not been supported by scientific studies or clinical trials unless otherwise stated. Different individuals may respond to medication in different ways. Every effort has been made to ensure that all information is accurate, up-to-date, and complete, but no guarantee is made to that effect. The use of the eHealthMe site and its content is at your own risk.

You may report adverse side effects to the FDA at or 1-800-FDA-1088 (1-800-332-1088).

If you use this eHealthMe study on publication, please acknowledge it with a citation: study title, URL, accessed date.

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