Thursday, November 7, 2013

ADHD diagnosis may have become too broad

The diagnosis of ADHD may have become too broad, leading to needless and potentially harmful treatment for some children, researchers warn.

A wider classification of symptoms for ADHD in the psychiatric ‘bible’ used by the profession has led to a steep rise in diagnosis and prescriptions for medication, the study warned.

The group of researchers from Australia and the Netherlands said there was now a risk of over diagnosis which could fuel scepticism about the disorder.

In addition, stretched resources may mean some seriously affected children do not get medical help, or they are undertreated.

In recent years, the term ADHD has been given to a collection of behavioural problems linked to poor attention span including impulsiveness, restlessness and hyperactivity.

Around three to seven per cent of children are believed to have ADHD, about 400,000, with many being prescribed drugs to try and improve their concentration at school.

Prescriptions for stimulant drugs such as Ritalin increased twofold for children and adolescents in the UK, and fourfold in adults between 2003 and 2008.  (more...)

No comments:

Post a Comment