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TOPIC: ADHD Not Sole Driver of Skyrocketing Stimulant Use

ADHD Not Sole Driver of Skyrocketing Stimulant Use 20 Sep 2013 14:08 #273

ADHD Not Sole Driver of Skyrocketing Stimulant Use in Kids
Posted September 19, 2013 by Caroline Cassels

The use of stimulant medications in children and adolescents during the past decade has increased 5-fold, but the rise is not solely due to attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), new research shows.

A large, prospective Danish study reveals that stimulants are increasingly being used to treat symptoms of other neuropsychiatric disorders, predominantly autism spectrum disorders (ASDs).

"The past decade has witnessed a clear and progressive increase in the prescriptions rates of medications typically used to treat ADHD in children and adolescents in Denmark. This increase is not limited to only those with ADHD, but includes others with neuropsychiatric disorders, including ASD," the authors, led by Søren Dalsgaard, MD, PhD, Aarhus University in Denmark, write.

In light of the fact that the evidence supporting the use of stimulants to treat ASD is limited, the researchers call for further investigation into the safety and efficacy of these drugs in the ASD population.


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