Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:


Medication shows promise in the treatment of hyperactivity associated with autism-related disorders


Medication commonly used to treat attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) may be effective for treatment of hyperactivity symptoms in children with autism and related pervasive developmental disorders, according to a study in the November issue of Archives of General Psychiatry, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Children with autism and other pervasive developmental disorders often also have symptoms of hyperactivity, distractibility and impulsiveness requiring treatment, according to background information in the article. Some previous small studies on the use of medications to treat hyperactivity in these children have shown promise, although side effects have been common, including irritability and social withdrawal.

David J. Posey, M.D., Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis, and colleagues in the Research Units on Pediatric Psychopharmacology (RUPP) Autism Network conducted this study. The RUPP Autism Network is funded by the National Institute of Mental Health and is dedicated to the development and testing of treatments for children with autism and related conditions. In this study the investigators conducted a randomized, placebo-controlled crossover trial to determine whether methylphenidate (a medication commonly used in the treatment of ADHD) would be effective in reducing hyperactivity and impulsiveness in children with pervasive developmental disorders. The trial included a one-week phase to test whether the participants could tolerate three different dose levels of the medication. This was followed by a four-week (crossover) phase during which the children were given one of three doses of methylphenidate or placebo in random order to assess effectiveness. Children showing a positive response were treated for an additional eight-week period to ensure that gains were stable. Response to treatment was assessed by parents and teachers using standardized ratings of behavior.

Seventy-two children, aged five to 14 years participated in the study. Six participants (eight percent) had intolerable negative side effects with more than one dosage level and withdrew from the study. Sixteen of the remaining children had intolerable negative side effects at the highest dose and were randomized to a modified crossover phase that omitted the highest dose. Seven participants withdrew due to intolerable negative side effects during the crossover phase, three at the highest dose, three at the medium dose and one while receiving the lowest dose. One child withdrew from the study for unspecified reasons, 58 children completed the crossover phase of the study.

Forty-four (76 percent) of the 58 participants responded during at least one of the four treatment conditions, the researchers report. Methylphenidate was consistently more effective in improving inattention, distractibility, hyperactivity and impulsivity than placebo.

"At present, methylphenidate is a reasonable choice to target hyperactivity in the context of PDDs [pervasive developmental disorders], given modest group effects and a response rate that approaches 50 percent," the authors conclude. "However, caregivers should be cautioned about the strong possibility of adverse effects. In addition, practitioners should be prepared to suspend treatment if considerable adverse effects are reported. Further secondary analyses are planned to better delineate individual responses and other moderators of response, including genotype."

Gene Ford | EurekAlert!
Further information:

More articles from Health and Medicine:

nachricht NIH scientists describe potential antibody treatment for multidrug-resistant K. pneumoniae
14.03.2018 | NIH/National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases

nachricht Researchers identify key step in viral replication
13.03.2018 | University of Pittsburgh Schools of the Health Sciences

All articles from Health and Medicine >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Researchers at Fraunhofer monitor re-entry of Chinese space station Tiangong-1

In just a few weeks from now, the Chinese space station Tiangong-1 will re-enter the Earth's atmosphere where it will to a large extent burn up. It is possible that some debris will reach the Earth's surface. Tiangong-1 is orbiting the Earth uncontrolled at a speed of approx. 29,000 km/h.Currently the prognosis relating to the time of impact currently lies within a window of several days. The scientists at Fraunhofer FHR have already been monitoring Tiangong-1 for a number of weeks with their TIRA system, one of the most powerful space observation radars in the world, with a view to supporting the German Space Situational Awareness Center and the ESA with their re-entry forecasts.

Following the loss of radio contact with Tiangong-1 in 2016 and due to the low orbital height, it is now inevitable that the Chinese space station will...

Im Focus: Alliance „OLED Licht Forum“ – Key partner for OLED lighting solutions

Fraunhofer Institute for Organic Electronics, Electron Beam and Plasma Technology FEP, provider of research and development services for OLED lighting solutions, announces the founding of the “OLED Licht Forum” and presents latest OLED design and lighting solutions during light+building, from March 18th – 23rd, 2018 in Frankfurt a.M./Germany, at booth no. F91 in Hall 4.0.

They are united in their passion for OLED (organic light emitting diodes) lighting with all of its unique facets and application possibilities. Thus experts in...

Im Focus: Mars' oceans formed early, possibly aided by massive volcanic eruptions

Oceans formed before Tharsis and evolved together, shaping climate history of Mars

A new scenario seeking to explain how Mars' putative oceans came and went over the last 4 billion years implies that the oceans formed several hundred million...

Im Focus: Tiny implants for cells are functional in vivo

For the first time, an interdisciplinary team from the University of Basel has succeeded in integrating artificial organelles into the cells of live zebrafish embryos. This innovative approach using artificial organelles as cellular implants offers new potential in treating a range of diseases, as the authors report in an article published in Nature Communications.

In the cells of higher organisms, organelles such as the nucleus or mitochondria perform a range of complex functions necessary for life. In the networks of...

Im Focus: Locomotion control with photopigments

Researchers from Göttingen University discover additional function of opsins

Animal photoreceptors capture light with photopigments. Researchers from the University of Göttingen have now discovered that these photopigments fulfill an...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>



Industry & Economy
Event News

Virtual reality conference comes to Reutlingen

19.03.2018 | Event News

Ultrafast Wireless and Chip Design at the DATE Conference in Dresden

16.03.2018 | Event News

International Tinnitus Conference of the Tinnitus Research Initiative in Regensburg

13.03.2018 | Event News

Latest News

TRAPPIST-1 planets provide clues to the nature of habitable worlds

21.03.2018 | Physics and Astronomy

The search for dark matter widens

21.03.2018 | Materials Sciences

Natural enemies reduce pesticide use

21.03.2018 | Life Sciences

Science & Research
Overview of more VideoLinks >>>