Tags: adhd | attention | deficit | rising

Why Are ADHD Diagnoses Rising in the US?

Why Are ADHD Diagnoses Rising in the US?
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By    |   Tuesday, 08 December 2015 04:47 PM

A new report finds diagnoses of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) have soared among U.S. schoolchildren since 2003, with girls charting a surprisingly sharp rise.

According to the study, by the George Washington University Milken Institute School of Public Health, 12 percent of American children and were diagnosed with ADHD in 2011 — a 43 percent increase since 2003 — based on parental reports.

That adds up to nearly 6 million children, ages 5 to 17, who now have the condition, which can cause inattention and behavioral difficulties, said lead researcher Sean D. Cleary, an associate professor of epidemiology and biostatistics. Cleary added that the biggest surprise was that researchers uncovered a big increase in ADHD among girls during the period of the study.

"We found the parent-reported prevalence for girls diagnosed with ADHD rose from 4.3 percent in 2003 to 7.3 percent in 2011. That's an increase of 55 percent over an 8-year period," Cleary said. "Traditionally, boys have been more likely to get a diagnosis of ADHD."

The report, published online in The Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, was based on data from the National Center for Health Statistics of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in a National Children's Survey from 2003-2011.

"We found rising rates of ADHD overall and very sharp jumps in certain subgroups," Cleary said, adding that for adolescents the diagnosis jumped by 52 percent since 2003. "Parents should be made aware of the findings in case they have a child or teenager that should be evaluated for the disorder, which can persist into adulthood."

Cleary said the rise could be a true increase in the number of ADHD diagnoses or could be the result of a tendency to over-diagnose the condition. Additional research will need to be done to find out what’s behind the rising trend, with special attention being paid to certain groups, Cleary said.

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Diagnoses of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder have soared among U.S. schoolchildren since 2003, with girls charting a surprisingly sharp rise, according to a study.
adhd, attention, deficit, rising
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2015-47-08
Tuesday, 08 December 2015 04:47 PM
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