Cases of ADHD are skyrocketing: epidemic or conspiracy?

March 19, 2014, 2:50 am

Data suggest that cases of ADHD are skyrocketing. One in nine children receive the diagnosis by age 18, and 70% of these are prescribed stimulants or other medications. Dr. William Graf, professor of Pediatrics and Neurology at Yale, told the New York Times “These are astounding numbers. I’m floored.”

But things are about to get worse. Under new criteria published in the recent edition of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM-5), even more children will quality for the diagnosis. This will almost certainly increase the number of prescriptions for ADHD drugs and, inevitably, increase cases of overdose. To read my Emergency Medicine News column on this situation, click here.

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