Health and Medical News and Resources

General interest items edited by Janice Flahiff

The conundrum between maturity and ADHD

Symptoms of ADHD described by the literature

Symptoms of ADHD described by the literature (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I’ve often wondered if populations and sub-populations can be over-diagnosed or misdiagnosed.
At times this can happen with good intentions, sometimes I fear for the sake of profit….

From the 10 April posting by MATTHEW TOOHEY, MD at KevinMD.com

A recent Canadian study showed that the youngest children in each grade (born in the earliest month of the Canadian grade cutoff: December) were 30% more likely to be diagnosed with ADHD than the oldest children (born in January). For girls, who overall have a lower incidence of ADHD, the difference was even more pronounced: 70%.

Interestingly, the overall rate of ADHD diagnosis in the sampling of children from this Canadian study (900,000 children) was 6.9% for boys and 2.2% for girls. Rates of diagnosis here in the United States are much higher, creeping up on 10% of all children.

What does all of this mean? Well, you can look at this data many different ways, depending on your point of view and feelings about ADHD, but it stresses to me what seems to be common sense: many factors play into our expectations of what normal behavior should be.  It is often the school which prompts parents to have their child evaluated for attention problems and this comes from a comparison to other children in the class. A six year old may be significantly less mature or able to stay on task than a seven year old. Likewise, boys tend to have more trouble with the expectations of the school environment than girls in the younger grades….

April 11, 2012 - Posted by | health care | , , , , , , ,

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