Journal scan

Drug treatment of childhood ADHD levels off in UK

Review of ‘Latest trends in ADHD drug prescribing patterns in children in the UK: prevalence, incidence and persistence’

The tendency to treat childhood attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) with drugs may have reached a plateau in the UK following a steep rise in the number of prescriptions for these medicines over the past 20 years.

Treatment of children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder lasts longer in the UK than in Europe and the US

But, according to research published in the online journal BMJ Open, while the number of children being treated has levelled off, their treatment lasts longer than that of their European and US peers.

The researchers based their findings on an analysis of Clinical Practice Research Datalink records of children up to the age of 16 who had been prescribed at least one drug to treat ADHD between 1992 and 2013.

Treatment options

Drugs are one of several treatment options for the condition, which include parental training and behavioural therapies.


Want to read more?

Unlock full access to RCNi Plus today

Save over 50% on your first three months:

  • Customisable clinical dashboard featuring 200+ topics
  • Unlimited online access to all 10 RCNi Journals including Mental Health Practice
  • RCNi Learning featuring 180+ RCN accredited learning modules
  • NMC-compliant RCNi Portfolio to build evidence for revalidation
  • Personalised newsletters tailored to your interests

This article is not available as part of an institutional subscription. Why is this?