The Proper Treatment For Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder

1508 words - 6 pages

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is thought to effect between two and seven percent of all childhood population, and roughly five percent of all adults. (Heal and Pierce 713-738, Weiss and Weiss 27-37) Kids and adults with ADHD exhibit a wide variety of symptoms ranging from inattention to impulsivity to hyperactivity, all of which can be treated with a correct application of modern medicine. (Jones 12-20) But as concerned parents look harder at modern treatments many begins to raise concerns about unwelcomed and unnecessary side effects such as increased chances of problematic cardiovascular issues. (Heal and Pierce 713-738) It is through these new concerns that alternative methods such as Psychotherapy and other natural treatments have been used to remedy ADHD symptoms. (Jones 12-20) With good evidence existing on both sides, a proper analysis must be completed to properly compare the two treatment methods.
In 1944 a scientist employed by the Swiss pharmaceutical company Ciba-Geigy AG synthesized a compound named Methylphenidate. (Morton and Stockton 159-164) Known as Ritalin to most ordinary users, Methylphenidate was quickly used to treat many conditions such as “…chronic fatigue and lethargic and depressed states, including those associated with tranquilizing agents and other drugs; disturbed senile behavior; psychoneuroses and psychoses associated with depression; and…narcolepsy” (Ritalin 441) As time progressed, Methylphenidate quickly became popular in the treatment of ADHD. Since ADHD is “thought to be caused by an inadequate supply of dopamine and norepinephrine to the brain…” Ritalin’s ability to boost dopamine levels is a quick way to reduce symptoms in the short term. (Gorman and Blackman) Testing results show that 70% of children with ADHD show marked improvement in both the behavioral and cognitive components of ADHD as well as the core symptoms of hyperactivity when treated with stimulant medication such as Methylphenidate, with a residual core of 25%-30% whose symptoms were non-responsive. (Heal and Pierce 713-738) In another test conducted with eighteen adults, the administration of Methylphenidate one hour and three hours prior to a word recall test showed significant improvement in those who had taken methylphenidate verses those who had taken a placebo medication. (Verster, Bekker, Kooij, Buitelaar, Verbaten, Volkerts, and Olivier 277-281) A list of fifteen words was presented to each patient five different times. Each time the patient was asked to write down as many of the words as they could remember, with the highest score measuring the patient’s immediate recall. Two hours later the patient was asked to write the same list again, this time as a measure of delayed recall. Finally, thirty words, including the fifteen that were on the original list, were presented one at a time. The patient’s ability to remember which words were on the original list measured the patient’s recognition score. The...

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