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Survey of adults reveals life-long consequences of ADHD

NEW YORK, May 6 -- Adults with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) may have grown up with the condition, but have they outgrown its effects? Findings from a new national survey, "Capturing America's Attention," indicate that adults with ADHD experience life-long impairments in several facets of their lives, including educational and professional achievements, self-image and interpersonal relationships. This survey is the first to examine the long-term impact of ADHD among 1,001 adults. Results were presented today at the American Psychiatric Association (APA) annual meeting.

While the exact number of adults with ADHD is unknown, it is estimated that four percent of the U.S. adult population is affected by ADHD. The survey found that the repercussions of ADHD may prohibit adults with the condition from reaching their full academic and occupational potential, and limit their satisfaction with themselves and their relationships.

"The importance of diagnosing and helping adults with ADHD has often been debated by individuals, health care professionals and by society in general," saidJoseph Biederman, M.D., Professor of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School and Chief of Pediatric Psychopharmacology at Massachusetts General Hospital. "The compelling results of this survey reinforce the fact that ADHD is a serious medical condition causing significant, life-long impairments. ADHD can no longer be dismissed as a 'fake' or 'made-up' disorder."

Negative Self-Image and Harmful Behaviors
Adults with ADHD are three times more likely to suffer from stress, depression or other problems with emotion. These emotional and physical effects can cause people with ADHD to "lose" days of their lives. "Lost days" may manifest as a day absent from work or several times throughout the month when the person is not fully engaged both physically and emotionally. About one in four (24 percent) adults with ADHD said that on 11 days per month
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Contact: Porter Novelli, Elizabeth Pallotta
epallotta@porternovelli.com
212-601-8134
Porter Novelli
6-May-2004


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