ADHD Medication May Be Shrinking Your Son’s Testes

By  | 

Although girls seem to be entering puberty at younger and younger ages, little boys with ADHD may find themselves entering manhood a little later than their other male peers.

Msnbc reports that monkeys who took Ritalin exhibited serious stunts to their physical growth, but the pause was not permanent. By age five, both medicated and unmedicated monkies arrived at “similar” stages of puberty:

High doses of the drug methylphenidate — the active ingredient in Ritalinand other ADHD medications —  reduced testes size and delayed descent of the testes in male monkeys younger than 5 years old, compared with monkeys not given the drug. The drug also reduced their testosterone levels at both low and high doses.

This is apparently not the first study to determine that ADHD may alter the growth of kids (although it’s the first that I’ve heard of it). Doctors say that these findings are “preliminary” and that no one should flush all the Ritalin in their homes just yet. However, considering that millions of children are on such medication, this is really the kind of thing a couple of million of parents would have probably liked to know sooner.

(photo: Shutterstock)