Saria has been taking Daytrana®, the methylphenidate patch, for two weeks now, and I thought it was time to post about our experiences.

Saria takes Ritalin®(methylphenidate) for her attention deficit symptoms. Without it, she’s pretty much in lala land all day and acting goofy. She still isn’t comfortable taking pills yet, so she had been taking the liquid form of the drug. Saria actually prefers the chewable tablets, but there has been a shortage on them for quite awhile.

While researching the shortage of the chewable form of methylphenidate, I discovered that there was a patch. It seemed like a good idea, because it would be a sustained release of the standard drug, and in theory would prevent any ups and downs.

I called our insurance company, because it wasn’t on our drug benefit formulary, and they said that it would be covered without a preauthorization, but at the highest tier, which would be $50 a month. Noven, the company that makes Daytrana, currently offers copay insurance that will reimburse one up to $60 through the end of 2013 each time a prescription is filled. We didn’t have the information when we filled it the first time, but plan on trying to use this benefit when we get it refilled.

The patch goes on the hip, and one is supposed to alternate hips each day. The first time we used it, there was a red spot that lasted a day, but now there’s no reaction. Although the patch is supposed to be waterproof, it did come off in the bath, and it’s probably a bad idea to have the patch wearer take a bath with another child.

We haven’t noticed any improvements over the typical drug as far as attention goes, but Saria is off of school for the summer, and we don’t require a lot of concentration from her. She definitely is not in lala land though, like when she doesn’t use methlyphenidate.

We had set an alarm to remind us to take the patch off at 5pm, but found that Saria was having problems getting to sleep, so we moved the alarm up to 4pm, and things are back to normal. It’s definitely important to set an alarm, because if you forget to take the patch off awhile before bedtime, good luck sleeping.

There are some great benefits to using a patch though. She no longer has to swallow the nasty tasting liquid form of the drug, twice a day. There is no interruption in the middle of her day to take another dose, which she hates. When school starts, she will be able to feel like a normal kid. She won’t have to go down to the office to take her medicine after lunch, and no one will know that she’s taking medicine.