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Do ADHD drugs really help college students without ADHD?

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Over the past 15 years there has been grow­ing aware­ness that many col­lege stu­dents with­out an ADHD diag­no­sis use ADHD drugs. On some cam­pus­es, rates of self-report­ed non-med­ical use have exceed­ed 30% of stu­dents. Read the rest of this entry »

Study suggests the real deficit underlying Attention Deficit Disorders is not Attention, but Working Memory

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Many par­ents have observed that their child with ADHD stays atten­tive and engaged dur­ing ‘high inter­est’ activ­i­ties, e.g., while play­ing video games, but has con­sid­er­able prob­lems stay­ing focused on less inher­ent­ly engag­ing tasks, e.g., doing school­work. This dis­crep­an­cy in atten­tion dur­ing pre­ferred and non-pre­ferred activ­i­ties has led some to Read the rest of this entry »

5 Must-Read Articles, and an Online Course, to Help Children with ADHD

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– Dr. David Rabin­er, Research Pro­fes­sor in the Depart­ment of Psy­chol­o­gy and Neu­ro­science at Duke Uni­ver­sity and founder of the Atten­tion Research Update.

Giv­en the ongo­ing changes and con­tro­ver­sies sur­round­ing ADHD diag­no­sis and treat­ment, let us high­light 5 key arti­cles writ­ten by Duke University’s Dr. David Rabin­er to sum­ma­rize recent sci­en­tif­ic find­ings and their impli­ca­tions, plus a very rel­e­vant online course to help par­ents and pro­fes­sion­als help chil­dren with ADHD.

1. Study finds large gaps between research and prac­tice in ADHD diag­no­sis and treat­ment

  • Key insight: Evi­dence-based guide­lines from the Amer­i­can Acad­e­my of Pedi­atrics on the eval­u­a­tion and treat­ment of ADHD are fre­quent­ly not fol­lowed. Many chil­dren are diag­nosed with ADHD in the absence of clear­ly meet­ing DSM diag­nos­tic cri­te­ria, and behav­ioral treat­ment is rarely rec­om­mend­ed.
  • Key data point: Pedi­a­tri­cians pre­scribed ADHD med­ica­tion to rough­ly 93% of youth diag­nosed with ADHD. Doc­u­men­ta­tion that behav­ioral treat­ment was rec­om­mend­ed, how­ev­er, was present in only 13% of the charts.

Read the rest of this entry »

Study: Rates of ADHD diagnosis and medication treatment continue to increase substantially

Begin­ning in about 1990, sub­stan­tial increas­es in the rates of ADHD diag­no­sis and med­ical treat­ment were found in sev­er­al nation­al­ly rep­re­sen­ta­tive sam­ples of US physi­cian office vis­its. For exam­ple, between 1995–96 and 2007-08, the num­ber of office vis­its at which an ADHD diag­no­sis was made increased by over 400% in adults — from 3.1 per 1000 vis­its to 14.5 per 1000 vis­its. And, the per­cent of adult office vis­its includ­ing both ADHD diag­no­sis and med­ica­tion increased from 1.9 to 11.4 per 1000 vis­its.

Among chil­dren aged 5 to 18, between 1991–92 and 2008-09, rates of ADHD diag­no­sis increased near­ly 4-fold among boys — from 39.5 to 144.6 per 1000 — and near­ly 6-fold for girls — from 12.3 and 68.5 per 1000 vis­its. Dur­ing this time, the rate of vis­its that also involved med­ica­tion treat­ment increased by sim­i­lar rates. Read the rest of this entry »

Discouraging new findings about pediatric care for children with ADHD: Often, best-practice guidelines are not followed

Most chil­dren with ADHD receive their care from com­mu­ni­ty-based pedi­a­tri­cians. Giv­en the large num­ber of school-age chil­dren who require eval­u­a­tion and treat­ment ser­vices for ADHD, and the adverse impact that poor qual­i­ty care can have on children’s devel­op­ment, it is impor­tant for chil­dren to rou­tine­ly receive care in the com­mu­ni­ty that is con­sis­tent with best-prac­tice guide­lines. Read the rest of this entry »

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