Number of U.S. Kids on ADHD Meds Keeps Rising
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|Wed, 09-28-2011 - 4:09pm|
WEDNESDAY, Sept. 28 (HealthDay News) -- The use of stimulant medications such as Ritalin or Adderall in children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is continuing to climb, although at a slower pace than in decades past, a new study finds.
The study's authors tracked U.S. prescription data from 1996 to 2008. They found the use of ADHD drugs was the highest among kids aged 6 to 12, rising slightly from 4.2 percent in 1996 to 5.1 percent 12 years later.
The most pronounced rise was in older children aged 13 to 18, however. In that group, use of ADHD drugs more than doubled -- from 2.3 percent in 1996 to 4.9 percent in 2008. Researchers said that reflects a greater understanding that kids often don't grow out of ADHD and that symptoms can persist through adolescence and even adulthood.
Overall, about 2.8 million children received a prescription for an ADHD medication in 2008, according to the study.
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