Attention deficit disorder is abehavioral disorder in children who display in common characteristics ofdevelopmentally inappropriate levels of inattention, impulsiveness and in somecases hyperactivity (Barkley, 1991; Wolraich, 1990). It was further defined inthe American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual ofMental Disorders revised 3rd edition (DSM -III-R) to indicatehyperactivity.In 1937, an American psychiatristCharles Bradley experimented with a stimulant drug Benzedrine Sulfate to hisyoung patients. These patients were diagnosed with behavioral disorders. In hisstudy, Bradley found striking change in behavior occurred in the schoolactivities of many of these patients after just seven days. Though, Bradley’sstudies went largely ignored in the field of child psychiatry for nearly 25years; nevertheless, they proved to be an important precursor to studies ofRitalin and Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). In 1944, Ritalin was first synthesizedusing natural stimulants including caffeine and ephedrine.
It was commonlyknown as Methylphenidate or MPH at that time. In 1950, Ritalin was used as atreatment for Mohr’s Syndrome. In 1955, Ritalin history took an official turnwhen the U.S. Food and Drug Administration first approved it as an oral tabletand listed the active ingredient as Methylphenidate hydrochloride.However, immediate released Ritalinrequired frequent dosing as drug had short half-life. These required childrento frequently visit nurse during the school, which was raising questions tofellow classmates. In 1982, Ritalin- SR was approved to reduce frequent dosingof immediate released Ritalin.
However, this formulation did not providesimilar therapeutic effects as immediate released Ritalin. In June 2002, FDAapproved Ritalin LA, which provides both immediate released and extendedreleased formulation in one tablet. This formulation shown better therapeuticeffects at same time cutting down the frequency of the drug.Since 1940s Ritalin has been improvingand researching on its therapeutic value.
Ritalin proven to improve mood andnegative behavior based on the individual reports of parent and teacher. Ritalinand other similar class of the stimulant plays key role in treating ADHD andimproving young child’s daily activity and negative behavior.