Methylphenidate is a medication commonly prescribed for the treatment of ADHD. Some studies suggest that the use of methylphenidate may increase the risk of psychosis, a mental health disorder in which the patient’s brain doesn’t process information correctly. This study aims to evaluate the association between the use of methylphenidate and the risk of psychosis in adolescents and young adults.

This is a cohort study conducted using population-based observational data in Sweden. The study included a total of 23,898 participants aged 12-30 years receiving methylphenidate treatment. The median age of the methylphenidate initiation was 17 years, and a history of psychosis was identified in 479 (2%) patients. The primary outcome of the study was the incidence of psychotic events during 12-week periods immediately before and after methylphenidate initiation, recognized using incidence rate ratios (IRR).

The IRR of psychotic events in the 12-week period before methylphenidate initiation treatment was 1.04 in adolescents and young adults with no history of psychosis. In the case of participants with a history of psychosis, the IRR was found to be 0.95.

The research concluded that there is no significant evidence suggesting that methylphenidate treatment initiation is associated with a higher risk of psychosis in adolescents and young adults.