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Adaptive skills are useful for evaluating the effect of pharmacological treatment in children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder.

Journal article
Authors Ida Lindblad
Salmir Nasic
Magnus Landgren
Leif Svensson
Christopher Gillberg
Elisabeth Fernell
Published in Acta paediatrica (Oslo, Norway : 1992)
Volume 106
Issue 1
Pages 96-100
ISSN 1651-2227
Publication year 2017
Published at Gillberg Neuropsychiatry Centre
Pages 96-100
Language en
Keywords ADHD ; adaptive function; outcome; pharmacological treatment
Subject categories Child and adolescent psychiatry


AIM: There are few long-term studies of adaptive functions as an outcome measure of pharmacological treatment in attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).This study assessed the adaptive abilities of children with ADHD before and after several years of pharmacological treatment. METHOD: We studied 12 children with a mean age of 15 years - seven boys and five girls - who had continued pharmacological treatment for ADHD for more than four years. The Adaptive Behavior Assessment Scales - Second Edition ratings by their teachers were compared before and after they had received treatment for ADHD. RESULTS: On a group level, the conceptual, practical and general adaptive composite domains improved significantly between the baseline and follow-up study. There were clear individual variations: more than half of the group increased from an adaptive level far below average to average, a minority displayed no major changes and one individual deteriorated. The girls tended to have better outcomes than the boys. CONCLUSION: This study was non-randomised and only analysed within group changes in a small number of participants. However, the findings suggest that four to five years of stimulant treatment had markedly positive effects on adaptive functioning in more than half of the school-age children with ADHD.

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