Since the 1980s, millions of children and adults around the globe have been diagnosed with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), a controversial illness that a number of professionals and advocacy groups claim was "invented" by pharmaceutical manufacturers and developers; physicians; school officials; and, interestingly, parents themselves who were seeking a remedy to their children's impulsive behavior patterns.
The answer for many families to a relative's diagnosis of ADHD soon became a prescription for the drug marketed as Ritalin by the company Novartis. Although many side effects were noted for Ritalin, they were often glossed over for and by families who were simply anxious to solve their children's behavioral and emotional problems.
Though the formula for Ritalin was developed in the mid-1950s, it usage didn't "take off" for thirty more years. Today, it is the most widely prescribed medication to combat ADHD, a term that is bandied about with ease, as it has become a normal part of many society's languages.
Since Ritalin was introduced, it has been prescribed by doctors to combat the symptoms of patients suffering from narcolepsy, chronic fatigue syndrome, and traumatic brain injury as well as ADHD. Because Ritalin acts like an amphetamine, it stimulates the brain but also calms the mind. The euphoria it gives some users has led many to consider it to be highly addictive; in fact, Ritalin tablets have been known to be sold on the "black market" for great sums of money. (The tablets are then ground and snorted by addicts.)
In the past twenty years, it's become apparent that side effects other than those originally mentioned on Ritalin's label are quite possible. For instance, many have alleged that:
- Ritalin caused their children's growth to be stunted;
- Ritalin may cause users to develop suicidal thoughts;
- Ritalin use as a child encourages drug addiction as an adult; and
- Ritalin may be a carcinogen.
Though Ritalin is still on the market today, more and more families and individuals are eschewing the drug. Even when an ADHD diagnosis is made, alternative methods of controlling that diagnosis are often sought (such as psychotherapy and behavior modification programs.) This is no doubt in response to the negative media backlash associated with Ritalin.
If you or your child was injured by Ritalin, you need to consult an experienced defective drug lawyer immediately. You may be entilted to financial compensation for your damages, but if you hesitate the statute of limitations in your state could end your case before it has a chance to begin. Contact our Ritalin side effect lawyers today.