The ADHD Weekly Blog from ADHD Experts

  • The Familial Relationship Between Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and Substance Use Disorders

       While it has been well documented that attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and substance use disorders (SUD) commonly co-occur, little is known about the reasons for this association.  Since both disorders are highly heritable one hypothesis is the high co-occurrence may be due to common genes.  One way to assess for a genetic relationship between ADHD and SUD is through a familial risk analysis.  Familial risk analysis compares the prevalence of an
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  • Is ADHD a Serious Condition?

    In the popular media, ADHD is sometimes portrayed as a minor condition or not a disorder at all.   In fact, it is easy to find web sites claiming that ADHD is an invention of the medical profession and that the symptoms used to diagnose the disorder are simply normal behaviors that have been “medicalized”.   These claims are wrong.  They miss the main point of any psychiatric diagnostic process which is to identify people who experience distress or
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  • ADHD Treatment Decision Tree

    If you’ve ever wondered how experts make treatment recommendations for patients with ADHD, take a look at this ADHD treatment decision tree that my colleagues and I constructed for our “Primer” about ADHD, http://rdcu.be/gYyV. Although a picture is worth a thousand words, keep in mind that this infographic only gives the bare bones of a complex process.   That said, it is telling that one of the first questions an expert asks is if the patient has a comorbid condition that is more
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  • 062617 ADHD Treatment Decision Tree

    If you’ve ever wondered how experts make treatment recommendations for patients with ADHD, take a look at this ADHD treatment decision tree that my colleagues and I constructed for our “Primer” about ADHD, http://rdcu.be/gYyV. Although a picture is worth a thousand words, keep in mind that this infographic only gives the bare bones of a complex process.   That said, it is telling that one of the first questions an expert asks is if the patient has a comorbid
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  • The Goal of ADHD Diagnosis? Safe and Effective Treatment

    The diagnosis of ADHD should only be done by a licensed clinician and that clinician should have one goal in mind: to plan a safe and effective course of evidenced-based treatment.  The infographic below gives a summary of this diagnostic approach over time, which my colleagues and I prepared for our “Primer” about ADHD, referenced below. .   A key point that parents of ADHD youth and adults with ADHD should keep in mind is that there is only one way to diagnose ADHD.  An expert
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  • ADHD from Childhood to Adulthood

    Although ADHD was conceived as a childhood disorder, we now know that many cases persist into adulthood.  My colleagues and I charted the progression of ADHD through childhood, adolescence and adulthood in our “Primer” about ADHD, http://rdcu.be/gYyV.   Although the lifetime course of ADHD varies among adults with the disorder, there are many consistent themes, which we described in the accompanying infographic.   Most cases of ADHD start in utero,
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  • New Amphetamine Formulation extends ADHD coverage to 16 Hours

    The Journal of Attention Disorders has published two papers about a new formulation of mixed amphetamine salts that uses a triple bead technology (MAS-TB). This technology allows for a delayed release of the medication and enables a duration of effect up to sixteen hours. This 16-hour effect is significantly higher than existing stimulant medications which on average last for 8-10 hours. This new formulation is based on patient desire to experience beneficial medication effects from
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  • What else could it be if it is NOT adult ADHD?

    ADHD is a difficult diagnosis to make, although there are several means for gathering the essential developmental and clinical data with which practicing clinician can make an accurate diagnosis. These include various symptom checklists, adult ADHD and executive functioning inventories, and structured interviews that target ADHD and diagnostic criteria, including onset, course, and impairment. However, there are many other conditions that can mimic the symptoms of ADHD in adults, making it
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  • ADHD Across the Lifespan: Adult Academic Outcomes of Childhood ADHD

       Childhood ADHD is known to persist into adolescence and adulthood in 40-70% of patients. However, its presentation changes with age; symptoms of hyperactivity become less prominent, while difficulties with attention and impulsivity may remain, and executive function problems become increasingly important[i]. Due to this evolving presentation, those with a childhood history of ADHD may not meet full ADHD diagnostic criteria, as adults. Yet, even high-functioning
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  • Assessment and Treatment Monitoring Tools for Adult ADHD

    Assessment and Treatment Monitoring Tools for Adult ADHD Despite the evidence that ADHD is a distinct condition from other psychiatric and neurodevelopmental disorders that affect adults, it is a challenging one to assess because of its overlap with other conditions. It is fortunate that there are several evidence-supported pharmacologic and psychosocial treatments available to adult ADHD. However, accurate assessment and measurement strategies during treatment are needed to optimize
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