In youth with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), the brain matures in a normal pattern but is delayed three years in some regions, on average, compared to youth without the disorder, an imaging study by researchers at the National Institutes of Health’s (NIH) National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) has revealed. The delay in ADHD was most prominent in regions at the front of the brain’s outer mantle (cortex), important for the ability to control thinking, attention and planning. Otherwise, both groups showed a similar back-to-front wave of brain maturation with different areas peaking in thickness at different times (see movie below).
“Finding a normal pattern of cortex maturation, albeit delayed, in children with ADHD should be reassuring to families and could help to explain why many youth eventually seem to grow out of the disorder,” explained Philip Shaw, M.D., NIMH Child Psychiatry Branch, who led research team.
So then maybe all those ADHD boys shouldn't be on Ritalin. Maybe we should let restless boys be restless and not expect them to act like calm girls.
Do ADHD kids who took Ritalin for years demonstrate higher or lower cognitive performance as adults than ADHD kids who do not take Ritalin?
Also, while I'm asking: Do the brains of ADHD kids develop more slowly because of genes, nutrition, or some other reason? I'm guessing it is at least partly genetic.
|Share |||Randall Parker, 2007 November 15 11:33 PM Brain Development|