Pharmacotherapy of the Preschool ADHD Treatment Study (PATS) Children Growing Up.
OBJECTIVE: To describe the long-term psychopharmacological treatment of children first diagnosed with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) as preschoolers. METHOD: In a systematic, prospective, naturalistic follow-up, 206 (68.0%) of the 303 children who participated in the Preschool ADHD Treatment Study (PATS) were reassessed 3 years (mean age 7.4 years) and 179 (59.1%) were reassessed 6 years (mean age 10.4 years) after completion of the controlled study. Pharmacotherapy and clinical data were obtained from the parents. Pharmacotherapy was defined as use of a specific class of medication for at least 50% of the days in the previous 6 months. RESULTS: At year 3, a total of 34.0% of the participants were on no pharmacotherapy, 41.3% were on stimulant monotherapy, 9.2% were on atomoxetine alone or with a stimulant, 8.3% were on an antipsychotic usually together with a stimulant, and the remaining 7.2% were on other pharmacotherapy; overall, 65.0% were on an indicated ADHD medication. At year 6, a total of 26.8% of the participants were on no pharmacotherapy, 40.2% were on stimulant monotherapy, 4.5% were on atomoxetine alone or with a stimulant, 13.4% were on an antipsychotic, and 15.1% were on other pharmacotherapy; overall, 70.9% were on an indicated ADHD medication. Antipsychotic treatment was associated with more comorbidity, in particular disruptive behavior disorders and pervasive development disorders, and a lower level of functioning. CONCLUSION: In this study, the long-term pharmacotherapy of preschoolers with ADHD was heterogeneous. Although stimulant medication continued to be used by most children, about 1 child in 4 was off medication, and about 1 in 10 was on an antipsychotic.
Vitiello, B; Lazzaretto, D; Yershova, K; Abikoff, H; Paykina, N; McCracken, JT; McGough, JJ; Kollins, SH; Greenhill, LL; Wigal, S; Wigal, T; Riddle, MA
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