Vermont 34th in Rate of Stimulant Treatment

The popular press has been abuzz with articles on ADHD, with many suggesting that the diagnosis is much overused and that medication treatment is basically a way that affluent parents give their children an academic advantage.   In the midst of all this controversy comes a recent and interesting study in the journal Psychiatric Methods, […]

Parent Training Rated as First Line Treatment for Preschool ADHD

Recent practice guideline from the American Academy of Pediatrics now include a recommendation for assessment and intervention for ADHD before they begin elementary school, but many clinicians are unsure about exactly what treatment to recommend.  A recent paper sponsored by the US Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality and published in the the journal JAMA […]

Limiting Antipsychotic Medications Shows Long-Term Benefits

The renewed debate surrounding the risk/benefit ratio of using antipsychotic medications for new onset psychotic illness has challenged the traditional recommendation of continued medication treatment for at least one year after remission.  While previous studies have documented an increased rates of relapse among those whose medications are discontinued, this risk is weighed against the potential […]

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ADHD Medications and School Performance

The Wall Street Journal recently published an article casting doubt about the ability of ADHD medications to improve school grades and achievement.  Actually, casting doubt might be a little soft as the title was “ADHD Drugs Don’t Boost Grades.”  In the article, the author runs through a number of studies (some not published) that find […]

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Study Challenges Youth Overmedication Perception

Are children and adolescents in the United States too easily given psychiatric medications?  There has been a lot of attention to this question lately with many people both within and outside of the mental health community believing that the answer is a resounding yes.   Yet while there is ample evidence suggesting that the percentage of […]

Preschool ADHD: The Picture Six Years Later

It is commonly believed inattentive and hyperactive preschool children will likely “grow out” of these problems later in life.  Good data to support this claim, however, are lacking.  The Preschool Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder Treatment Study  (PATS) was one of the most comprehensive studies to date on very young children with ADHD.  This recent report on the […]

Medication Storage Safety – Not a Glamorous Conversation, but Important

We all know how important the right medications can be to health, but when they are not stored properly, these same medications can become dangerous instruments of misuse.  Diversion, suicide attempts, and accidental overdose can all result from the unsecured storage of medications.  A conversation with parents about safe medications storage can sometimes be the […]

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Can Reviewing Potential Side Effects Increase their Chance of Being Reported?

It is standard (and required practice) to give informed consent prior to beginning a new medication during which possible side effects are discussed.  While few would argue with this practice, clinicians have wondered about the possibility that the very discussion of potential side effects might actually create an expectation that they will occur and thus […]

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Stimulants for Cognitive Enhancement – Social Justice or Cosmetic Psychopharmacology?

A thought provoking article in the NY times raises questions about the practice of giving stimulant medications to children who don’t meet criteria for ADHD but who nonetheless might benefit from their effects.   While the issue of stimulants being taken by competitive students trying to gain an edge in college has been well documented, this […]

Liquid Long-Acting Methylphenidate Preparation Now FDA Approved for ADHD

Beginning in January, physicians will have the new option of a liquid long-acting methylphenidate treatment that requires only once-daily dosing.  The medication, made by NextWave Pharmaceuticals (which will be sold to Pfizer), is called Quillivant XR and will be available at a 25mg/5ml (5mg/ml) concentration. The recommended starting dose for children 6 years old and […]

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