WASHINGTON D.C. (WUSA9) -- It isn't just children who are suffering from attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). A new study, "Mortality, ADHD and Psychosocial Adversity in Adults With Childhood ADHD: A Prospective Study," soon to be published in the April 2013 issue, Pediatrics, sheds light on how ADHD is now following children into adulthood.
367 adults who had been diagnosed with ADHD in childhood between 1976 and 1982 were evaluated in Rochester, Minn,. where they were compared to another group of adults who did not have ADHD. On average, both groups were followed for 27 years and their medical and school records were closely evaluated.
The study found that 30% of children continue to live with the disorder as adults. The difference in suicide rate was notably higher: those with childhood ADHD-3.83%. Not to mention that childhood ADHD was associated with a 57% rate of one or more other psychiatric disorders.
"It is concerning that only a minority of children with ADHD reaches adulthood without suffering serious adverse outcomes, suggesting that the care of childhood ADHD is far from optimal," the authors of the study said.
The key message? ADHD shouldn't be ignored in childhood or adulthood, Rachel Fargason, MD, of the University of Alabama at Birmingham, commented in an interview with MedPage Today.
The American Psychiatric Association calculates 3%-7% of school-aged children have ADHD in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-IV-TR).