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News2013November › 11 per cent of US children diagnosed with ADHD › November 2013

11 per cent of US children diagnosed with ADHD

Around 11 per cent of all children in the US have been diagnosed with ADHD (attention-deficit, hyperactivity disorder), an increase of 42 per cent in eight years

Around 11 per cent of all children in the US have been diagnosed with ADHD (attention-deficit, hyperactivity disorder), an increase of 42 per cent in eight years. Today, 6.4 million children aged between four and 17 have the learning or behavioural problem. More than 3.5 million of the children-which is 70 per cent of all children with an ADHD diagnosis-are taking a powerful stimulant such as Ritalin for the disorder, an increase of 28 per cent on previous figures for 2007. Around half the children are diagnosed by the time they reach the age of six, say researchers from America's Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), although the more severe cases are usually identified by the time the child reaches the age of four. Their latest figures reveal that two million more children in the US have been diagnosed with ADHD since 2003, and another million are taking ADHD medication. However, diagnosis seems to vary between US states. Diagnosis rates range from 15 per cent of all children in Arkansas and Kentucky down to just 4 per cent in Nevada. (Source: Journal of the American Academy of Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, 2013; doi: 10.1016/j.jaac.2013.09.001)


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