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ADHD Treatments Not Working for Most Young Children
Date:2/11/2013

MONDAY, Feb. 11 (HealthDay News) -- Most young children being treated for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD ) -- either with or without medication -- still have serious symptoms of their condition, according to a new long-term study.

The neurobehavioral disorder interferes with the ability to concentrate. ADHD also causes restlessness, hyperactivity and impulsive behavior, which can have lasting effects on children's intellectual and emotional development.

"ADHD is becoming a more common diagnosis in early childhood, so understanding how the disorder progresses in this age group is critical," study lead investigator Dr. Mark Riddle, a pediatric psychiatrist at the Johns Hopkins Children's Center, said in a Hopkins news release. "We found that ADHD in preschoolers is a chronic and rather persistent condition, one that requires better long-term behavioral and pharmacological treatments than we currently have."

In conducting the study, the researchers followed 186 children ranging from 3 years old to 5 years old who were diagnosed with ADHD. The children were treated for several months for their condition as part of the study before being referred to local pediatricians for ongoing care.

For six years, the researchers monitored the children's behavior, school performance and symptoms of ADHD through detailed reports from parents and teachers. Specifically, they tracked the severity of the three primary ADHD symptoms: inattention, hyperactivity and impulsivity.

Children also received thorough check-ups from study clinicians when the research began and again three and six years later.

The study revealed that 90 percent of the children continued to experience symptoms of the condition six years after their diagnosis and ongoing treatment.

Two-thirds of the children were on medication for ADHD. Their symptoms were just as severe as those of the kids who were not taking any drugs. Of partic
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