Effects of Methylphenidate Versus Sustained Release Methylphenidate on Cognitive Functioning

The safety and scientific validity of this study is the responsibility of the study sponsor and investigators. Listing a study does not mean it has been evaluated by the U.S. Federal Government. Read our disclaimer for details. Identifier: NCT00418691
Recruitment Status : Terminated (Closed early due to slow accrual.)
First Posted : January 5, 2007
Results First Posted : May 6, 2011
Last Update Posted : August 7, 2012
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
M.D. Anderson Cancer Center

Brief Summary:

Primary Objective:

  • To assess the efficacy of immediate release methylphenidate, sustained release methylphenidate, and the novel vigilance enhancing drug modafinil for the improvement of cognitive functioning in patients with brain tumors.

Condition or disease Intervention/treatment Phase
Brain Tumor Drug: IR Methylphenidate Drug: Modafinil Drug: SR Methylphenidate Phase 3

Detailed Description:

All three drugs used in this clinical research study are widely used stimulants to help cancer patients who have fatigue and problems with concentration.

Before treatment starts, you will have a physical exam, including measurement of blood pressure, and neuropsychological and symptom evaluations. The neuropsychological evaluation is made up of tests of attention, memory, speech, and other brain functions, and takes about 30 minutes to complete. The other test evaluates symptoms you may be experiencing, such as fatigue or depression, and takes about 10 minutes to complete.

You will be randomly assigned (as in the toss of a coin) to one of three treatment groups. Participants in the first group will receive Immediate Release (IR) methylphenidate. Participants in the second group will receive Sustained Release (SR) methylphenidate. Participants in the third group will receive modafinil. There is an equal chance of being assigned to any of the groups. After you are randomized, you will contact the M. D. Anderson pharmacy to receive your assigned medication. You will receive a total of 5 weeks worth of medication. The extra week of medication is to allow for buffer should there be any conflict in rescheduling the follow-up evaluation.

IR methylphenidate is a pill taken twice a day. Both SR methylphenidate and modafinil are pills taken once a day. The amount of the medicine is the same for all three groups. You will take the medication every day for a total of 4 weeks.

You will be asked to complete a study calendar, which will be provided by the research staff. In the study calendar, you will be asked to initial after you take the study drug each day, and to record any side effects you may experience. You will be required to return the completed study calendar at the final evaluation visit, along with the empty bottles and any of the study drugs that may be left over.

You will remain on treatment for 4 weeks and return for a final evaluation. A follow-up neuropsychological evaluation and evaluation of symptoms will be performed. At the end of the study treatment period, you will be allowed to remain on active treatment if you wish to. You can discuss with your doctor whether to continue on the same medication or to try another one.

This is an investigational study. All of the study drugs are FDA approved and currently are used to help brain tumor patients. A total of 75 patients will take part in this study. All will be enrolled at M. D. Anderson.

Study Type : Interventional  (Clinical Trial)
Actual Enrollment : 34 participants
Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: None (Open Label)
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Assessing the Efficacy of Immediate Release Methylphenidate, Sustained Release Methylphenidate and Modafinil for Patients With Brain Tumors
Study Start Date : February 2004
Actual Primary Completion Date : November 2009
Actual Study Completion Date : November 2009

Resource links provided by the National Library of Medicine

MedlinePlus related topics: Brain Tumors
U.S. FDA Resources

Arm Intervention/treatment
Active Comparator: Immediate Release (IR) Methylphenidate
10 mg by mouth (PO) twice daily for 4 Weeks
Drug: IR Methylphenidate
10 mg by mouth (PO) twice daily x 4 Weeks
Other Name: Ritalin
Active Comparator: Sustained Release (SR) Methylphenidate
200 mg PO once daily for 4 Weeks
Drug: SR Methylphenidate
18 mg PO Once Daily x 4 Weeks
Other Name: Ritalin
Active Comparator: Modafinil
18 mg PO once daily for 4 Weeks
Drug: Modafinil
200 mg PO Once Daily x 4 Weeks
Other Name: Provigil

Primary Outcome Measures :
  1. Mean Processing Speed Change From Baseline in the Trail-making Test Part A Score [ Time Frame: Baseline to 4-5 weeks on study medication ]
    'Trail Making Test Part A' is a neuropsychological test of visual attention and task switching, administered to measure processing speed, timed as participants follow "trail" made by consecutive numbers (1,2,3, etc.). The test is finished as quickly as possible, and the time taken to complete the test used as the primary performance metric (in seconds). Maximum time allowed is 300 seconds. A lower change score indicates improvement. Participants tested before starting study medication and 4-5 weeks later while on study medication, reflected in a z score (deviations from population mean).

  2. Patient Cognitive Test Scores at End of Treatment Period [ Time Frame: Baseline to end of Week 4 treatment period ]
    For cognitive assessment, set of widely used standardized psychometric instruments shown to be sensitive to neurotoxic effects of cancer treatment. Measures assess attention span (Digit Span), graphomotor speed (Digit Symbol), memory (Hopkins Verbal Memory Test-Revised), verbal fluency (Controlled Oral Words Association), visual motor scanning speed (Trail Making Test Part A), executive function (Trail Making Test Part B); motor speed and dexterity (Grooved Pegboard).

Information from the National Library of Medicine

Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contacts provided below. For general information, Learn About Clinical Studies.

Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years and older   (Adult, Senior)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  1. Patient diagnosed with a brain tumor, either primary or metastatic
  2. Patient had prior radiation treatment to the brain
  3. Patient is > or = 18 years of age
  4. Patient has a Karnofsky performance status (KPS) performance of 70 at baseline
  5. Patient is using acceptable birth control methods. Female participants (if of child bearing age and sexually active) and male participants (if sexually active with a partner of child-bearing potential) must use medically acceptable methods of birth control, including abstinence, birth control pills, diaphragm with spermicide, condom with foam or spermicide, vaginal spermicidal suppository or surgical sterilization.
  6. Patient must speak and understand English or Spanish
  7. Patient has reported cognitive decline and is being considered for stimulant therapy by their neurologist
  8. Patient has provided written informed consent to participate in the study prior to enrollment to the study

Exclusion Criteria:

  1. History of hypersensitivity reaction to methylphenidate or modafinil
  2. History of severe headaches, glaucoma, major psychiatric diagnosis, narcolepsy, Tourette's syndrome, marked anxiety, tension or agitation
  3. History of clinically significant pulmonary or cardiac disease
  4. Uncontrolled hypertension: has not been on a stable treatment dose for the past month, or has a systolic pressure consistently greater than 140 mm Hg or diastolic pressure consistently greater than 90 mm Hg
  5. Patients with uncontrolled seizures will be excluded
  6. Current use of illicit drugs or history of alcohol or drug abuse and/or abuse potential
  7. Moderate to severe depression (> 20 on Beck Depression Inventory II)
  8. If taking antidepressants, patient must be on a stable dose
  9. Currently taking psychostimulants, Monoamine oxidase (MAO) inhibitors, or anticoagulants
  10. Current use of the following herbals or supplements for fatigue relief (dehydroepiandrosterone (DHEA), S-Adenosyl methionine (SAME), ginkgo, ginseng, St. John's Wort)
  11. Any coexisting medical condition or are taking any concomitant medication that is likely to interfere with the safe administration of methylphenidate. Any potential interactions or coexisting medical condition not specified by the protocol will be determined by the prescribing physician as being exclusionary or not.
  12. Patients currently taking any erythropoietin type drugs

Information from the National Library of Medicine

To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contact information provided by the sponsor.

Please refer to this study by its identifier (NCT number): NCT00418691

United States, Texas
U.T.M.D. Anderson Cancer Center
Houston, Texas, United States, 77030
Sponsors and Collaborators
M.D. Anderson Cancer Center
Principal Investigator: Jeffrey S. Wefel, PhD M.D. Anderson Cancer Center

Additional Information:
Responsible Party: M.D. Anderson Cancer Center Identifier: NCT00418691     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: 2003-0925
First Posted: January 5, 2007    Key Record Dates
Results First Posted: May 6, 2011
Last Update Posted: August 7, 2012
Last Verified: August 2012

Keywords provided by M.D. Anderson Cancer Center:
Brain Tumor

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Brain Neoplasms
Central Nervous System Neoplasms
Nervous System Neoplasms
Neoplasms by Site
Brain Diseases
Central Nervous System Diseases
Nervous System Diseases
Central Nervous System Stimulants
Physiological Effects of Drugs
Dopamine Uptake Inhibitors
Neurotransmitter Uptake Inhibitors
Membrane Transport Modulators
Molecular Mechanisms of Pharmacological Action
Dopamine Agents
Neurotransmitter Agents
Wakefulness-Promoting Agents
Cytochrome P-450 CYP3A Inducers
Cytochrome P-450 Enzyme Inducers