Drug Therapy for Treating Children with ADHD

July 2nd, 2008

Many children suffer with the condition known as Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder also known as ADHD.   ADHD symptoms are described in our article at Child N Parent.   Children with ADHD are often treated with a combination of behavioral, psychological and drug therapies.  Fortunately, new, more effective drugs are being developed having fewer side effects for children.

A child with ADHD usually feels bombarded with environmental sights and sounds.  This sensory overload coupled with an impulse for movement causes behavior difficulties and an inability to cope with situations in a step by step manner. The drug methylphenidate helps a child’s brain deal with social and educational situations in a step by step format.

Ritalin,  the most commonly prescribed drug for treating ADHD, is a form of methylphenidate.  It mildly stimulates the central nervous system to increase chemical messages between the nerve cells of the brain and improves focus and overall concentration.

Other drugs used to treat ADHD that contain methylphenidate include Concerta, Metadate CD, Metadate ER, Ritalin LA and Ritalin SR.  Focalin XR is a combination of drugs designed to be released at a steady rate throughout the day.  Focalin XR has the advantage of fewer side effects for children and is effective longer.  Adderall is another stimulant drug used to treat ADHD with a long lasting effect.  Consult your medical professional to find the best drug with the fewest side effects for your child.

A new drug, called ABT-089, is currently in phase II clinical trials under the sponsorship of Abbott Labs.  The effectiveness of ABT-089 in children is being tested now in one clinical phase II trial.   Two more projects are being prepared with one recruiting participants and one study by invitation only.  Project completions are scheduled for October 2008 and July 2009.  In a recent press release from Abbott, the drug was found to be a “potentially safe and effective treatment” in adults with ADHD.

Drug therapy is just one of the many treatment solutions available for children with ADHD.  Carefully research your medical options to decide which therapies are best for your child.

Find symptoms and treatments available for ADHD at our article in the Child Health section at Child N Parent.

Facts of methylphenidate use including precautions at the National Institute of Drug Abuse.

Description uses and cautions for Ritalin

National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) report on the ADHD study currently recruiting participants.

By:  Debby Hoffer

Entry Filed under: Child Health

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