meth·​yl·​phe·​ni·​date ˌme-thəl-ˈfe-nə-ˌdāt How to pronounce methylphenidate (audio)
: a mild stimulant C14H19NO2 of the central nervous system used in the form of its hydrochloride to treat narcolepsy and hyperactivity disorders (such as attention deficit disorder) in children

Examples of methylphenidate in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The shortage began with Adderall last fall, but has since had a domino effect, with long- and short-acting versions of methylphenidate (Ritalin and Concerta), as well as Focalin, Vyvanse, and numerous generic equivalents of these drugs now in short supply, too. Caroline Hopkins, NBC News, 9 Sep. 2023 Demand for stimulants has soared For children with ADHD who have trouble functioning in daily life, stimulant medications like amphetamines (Adderall) and methylphenidate (including Ritalin and Concerta) have long been considered the gold standard of treatment by psychiatrists and pediatricians. Christina Caron,, 19 Aug. 2023 On methylphenidate, for example, participants took around 50% longer on average to complete the knapsack task. Productivity -- defined as the average value gained per move -- decreased compared with placebo when participants used cognitive-enhancing drugs. Judy George | Medpage Today, ABC News, 15 June 2023 Those in the top 25% of productivity with placebo often ended up in the bottom 25% with methylphenidate, for example. Judy George | Medpage Today, ABC News, 15 June 2023 These drugs fell under three categories: psychedelics (psilocybin, DMT, LSD, MDMA, ayahuasca, and ketamine), anesthetics (propofol and sevoflurane), and cognitive enhancers (modafinil and methylphenidate). Jocelyn Solis-Moreira, Popular Science, 14 June 2023 The drugs included in the survey were amphetamine, methylphenidate, Ritalin, Adderall, Concerta, Metadate, Dexedrine, Focalin and Vyvanse. Berkeley Lovelace Jr., NBC News, 18 Apr. 2023 Three types of stimulants are approved for ADHD: amphetamine (Dexedrine, Adderall), methamphetamine (Desoxyn), and methylphenidate (Ritalin). Kaitlin Sullivan, NBC News, 30 Mar. 2023 As of January, the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, which tracks drug availability, reported shortages affecting nearly 40 different doses or formulations of generic Concerta, a long-acting form of methylphenidate, the drug in Ritalin. Caroline Hopkins, NBC News, 6 Feb. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'methylphenidate.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


methyl + phenyl + piperidine + acetate

First Known Use

1956, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of methylphenidate was in 1956

Dictionary Entries Near methylphenidate

Cite this Entry

“Methylphenidate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Dec. 2023.

Medical Definition


meth·​yl·​phe·​ni·​date ˌmeth-əl-ˈfen-ə-ˌdāt How to pronounce methylphenidate (audio) -ˈfē-nə- How to pronounce methylphenidate (audio)
: a mild stimulant of the central nervous system that is administered orally in the form of its hydrochloride C14H19NO2·HCl to treat narcolepsy and attention deficit disorder

Note: Trademarks for methylphenidate include Concerta, Quillivant, and Ritalin.

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