Compare Medrol vs. Ritalin

Head-to-head comparisons of medication uses, side effects, ratings, and more.

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Calms down your immune system.

Medrol (methylprednisolone) is very effective for controlling allergic reactions and many types of inflammatory conditions, but it is associated with serious and potentially life-threatening side effects if you have to take it for a long time.

3.7/ 5 average rating with 66 reviewsforMedrol
Helps you focus and stay alert.

Ritalin (methylphenidate) is a first-choice treatment for ADHD that comes in many different forms, but you need to take this medication more often than alternatives.

3.5/ 5 average rating with 526 reviewsforRitalin
Upsides
  • Medrol (methylprednisolone) is effective for treating a variety of conditions involving the immune system.
  • Can help improve energy and stimulate your appetite.
  • Works quickly to provide relief for swelling, rash, asthma attacks, and pain.
  • Medrol (methylprednisolone) is available in a generic form.
  • Available as blister packs that organize tablets into specific days and times for easier administration.
  • First-choice medication to treat ADHD because it is cheap and effective.
  • Ritalin (methylphenidate) is used with counseling and other non-drug therapies to treat ADHD.
  • Available as a generic medication.
  • Available in many different forms: extended-release and immediate-release tablets, chewable tablet, and liquid.
  • Preferred medicine for elderly with ADHD or narcolepsy because it is safer than alternatives for this population.
Downsides
  • Medrol (methylprednisolone) can cause unwanted side effects such as mood changes, trouble sleeping, and increase in blood pressure as well as blood sugar at higher doses.
  • Long-term use can cause problems to your skin, bones, eyes, and place you at a higher risk for infections.
  • If Medrol (methylprednisolone) is used for more than 2 weeks, you will need to work with a doctor to get off of the medicine by gradually decreasing the dose.
  • Medrol (methylprednisolone) can cause harm to an unborn baby, so it might not be a good option for pregnant women.
  • Might cause abnormal growth and development when used in children.
  • Need to take Ritalin (methylphenidate) 2 or 3 times a day compared to other ADHD medications which you can take once daily.
  • Can raise your blood pressure and pulse, so its not safe for people with heart problems.
  • It's a controlled medication (CII), so you may need to get a new prescription each month from your doctor.
  • Ritalin (methylphenidate) may affect growth in children and teens in some cases.
  • Ritalin (methylphenidate) contains a mixture of active and inactive compounds (dexmethylphenidate and methylphenidate, respectively), which may not work as well for some people.
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Used for
  • Allergies
  • Skin conditions
  • Endocrine conditions
  • Eye conditions
  • Gastrointestinal conditions
  • Respiratory disorder
  • Multiple Sclerosis flare-up
  • Blood-related conditions
  • Drug-associated allergic reactions
  • Lupus
  • Cancer
  • Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Juvenile Rheumatoid Arthritis
  • Severe Psoriasis
  • COPD episode
Dosage forms
  • Pill
  • Injection
  • Pill
  • Chewable tablet
  • Liquid
Price
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Reviews
66 reviews so far
59%
saidit'sworth it
53%
saiditworked well
23%
saidit'sa big hassle

Have you used Medrol (methylprednisolone)?

Leave a review
526 reviews so far
60%
saidit'sworth it
42%
saiditworked well
19%
saidit'sa big hassle

Have you used Ritalin (methylphenidate)?

Leave a review
Side effects
The Medrol (methylprednisolone) FDA package insert doesn’t have numbers about how common side effects are.
17possible side effects
  • Lowered appetite
    25%
  • Headache
    22%
  • Dry mouth
    14%
  • Nausea
    13%
  • Difficulty sleeping
    12%
  • Anxiety
    8%
  • Weight loss
    7%
  • Dizziness
    7%
  • Irritability
    6%
  • Fast heartbeat
    5%
  • Sweating
    5%
  • Depression
    4%
  • Stomach pain
    2%
  • Loss of appetite
    2%
  • Vomiting
    2%
  • Blurry vision
    2%
  • Aggressive behavior
    2%
See more detailed side effects
Risks and risk factors
  • Weakened immune system response to stress
    • Taking high doses of Medrol (methylprednisolone) for a long period of time
    • Young children
    • Stress such as trauma, injury, or infection
  • Increased risk for infections
    • Taking other medicines that weaken the immune system
    • Taking Medrol (methylprednisolone) for a long time
    • Those who are not vaccinated against viral illnesses
    • Coming into contact with people who have viral illness
    • History of bacterial or viral conditions
  • Changes in heart and kidney function
    • Those who had a recent heart attack
    • History of heart failure, high blood pressure, and kidney problems
  • Eye problems
    • Those with cataracts and/or glaucoma
    • History of herpes simplex in the eye
  • Harm to fetus (unborn baby)
    • Pregnant women
    • Women who can or plan to become pregnant
See more detailed risks and warnings
  • Abuse and dependence
    • History of drug abuse
    • Alcoholism
  • Serious or life-threatening heart problems
    • History of heart problems
  • Aggressive behavior and psychiatric symptoms
    • History of psychotic episodes
    • History of bipolar disorder
    • History of Tourette's syndrome
  • Height and weight delay in children
    • Children
  • Seizures
    • History of seizures
  • Circulation problems in the hands and feet
See more detailed risks and warnings