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Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder: Potential Misuse of Stimulant Medications

Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a neurobehavioral disorder characterized by clinically significant levels of inattention, hyperactivity, and impulsivity that cause impairment in multiple settings. A variety of treatment approaches are available to treat individuals who have ADHD, including nonpharmacological and pharmacological approaches. However, prescription stimulant medications are the most commonly prescribed medications for ADHD. This entry examines prescription stimulant medications use, misuse, and diversion (i.e., sharing or selling), with focus on individuals with ADHD.

Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder

ADHD is estimated to affect approximately 3% to 7% of school-age children and 2.5% of the adult population. The disorder is diagnosed more often in boys than girls, has different diagnostic rates among individuals from different ethnicities, and is found around the world with rates varying significantly across countries. Previously it was ...

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