home
RSS
August 18th, 2010
07:08 PM ET

Nearly 1 million ADHD misdiagnoses, study says


CNN recently reported that many psychologists are seeing a lot of misdiagnoses of ADHD. Readers had a lot to say about that.

Now studies are backing up anecdotal evidence that ADHD gets inappropriately applied to many children.

An analysis by economist Todd Elder at Michigan State University suggests that about 900,000 children who have been told they have ADHD in America may not have the condition at all. The study will appear in the Journal of Health Economics.

Elder found that how old a child is relative to peers in the same class also affects teacher perception of ADHD symptoms. In other words, teachers tended to perceive ADHD symptoms more in younger kids than older kids, even in the same grade. Younger children were also more likely to take stimulant medication for ADHD. The study authors suggest that children who are young for their grade may get an inappropriate diagnosis because teachers mistake their immaturity for ADHD.

The age at which a child starts school influences teachers' perceptions of whether the child has ADHD-related symptoms, but does not as strongly affect the parents' perceptions, the study said. Data for this research came from the Early Childhood Longitudinal Study Kindergarten Cohort.

Another study in the Journal of Health Economics, led by William Evans at the University of Notre Dame, found similar results regarding the age of the child and the likelihood of ADHD diagnosis. Researchers looked at data from the National Health Interview Survey, the Medical Expenditure Panel Survey, and a nationwide private insurance company.

Both Elder's and Evans' studies found that being young in a grade more than doubles the likelihood of receiving an ADHD diagnosis or treatment. Evans' study says:

Since ADHD is an underlying neurological problem where incidence rates should not change dramatically from one birth date to the next, these results suggest that age relative to peers in class, and the resulting differences in behavior, directly affects a child’s probability of being diagnosed with and treated for ADHD.

The cost of a misdiagnosis on the health and well-being of a child is tremendous, Elder writes. Chronic stimulant medication for ADHD may lead to possible cardiovascular problems and a reduction of children's growth rates, studies have found. These medications also take a substantial toll on the family. Elder estimates that $320 million to $500 million is annually spent on ADHD treatments for children who inappropriately received the diagnosis.


soundoff (208 Responses)
  1. vreyrolinomit

    Hi, i think that i saw you visited my site thus i came to “return the favor”.I am trying to find things to enhance my site!I suppose its ok to use a few of your ideas!!

    http://www.vreyrolinomit.com/

    February 26, 2021 at 14:19 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. anxiety pill

    I really like reading through a post that can make men and women think.
    Also, thank you for permitting me to comment!

    Here is my web blog anxiety pill

    March 6, 2021 at 23:07 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. storno brzinol

    Outstanding post, you have pointed out some good details , I too conceive this s a very superb website.

    http://www.stornobrzinol.com/

    May 15, 2021 at 04:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  4. stornobrzinol

    Way cool, some valid points! I appreciate you making this article available, the rest of the site is also high quality. Have a fun.

    http://www.stornobrzinol.com/

    May 15, 2021 at 13:37 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. pansionat.com.ru

    Very well written story. It will be supportive to anyone who employess it, as well as yours truly :
    ). Keep doing what you are doing – for sure i will check out more posts.

    my homepage ... Neurostym Reviews (pansionat.com.ru)

    May 24, 2021 at 04:37 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. ltđ tbn

    Xoilac Tv Thẳng đá Bóng ty le nha caiĐội tuyển futsal nước Việt Nam đã có một trận đấu đồng ý được trước phe đối lập đầy mức độ mạnh Lebanon. Kết trái Bà Rịa-Vũng Tàu vs Bình Phước ngày hôm nay 18h00 ngày 5/5, Hạng nhất Việt Nam.

    https://questiontime.info/

    June 19, 2021 at 01:03 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. Elevate Neuro Review

    Awesome article it is without doubt. Friend on mine has been looking for this
    info.

    Here is my web page Elevate Neuro Review

    June 23, 2021 at 04:53 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. 24h lyly

    Xoilac Tv Trực Tiếp đá Bóng7mcn livescoreXem đá bóng trực tuyến Trực tiếp Odd BK vs Sarpsborg, 20h ngày 24/5, giải VĐQG Na Uy. Xem lịch vạc sóng trực tiếp soccer EURO ngày hôm nay được Webthethao update chủ yếu xác nhất.

    https://chiefscreolecafe.com/detail/thvl3-101383.html

    June 29, 2021 at 11:15 | Report abuse | Reply
1 2 3

Post a comment


 

CNN welcomes a lively and courteous discussion as long as you follow the Rules of Conduct set forth in our Terms of Service. Comments are not pre-screened before they post. You agree that anything you post may be used, along with your name and profile picture, in accordance with our Privacy Policy and the license you have granted pursuant to our Terms of Service.

Advertisement
About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.