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Patients with ADHD at an increased risk of injuries

The results show pediatric patients with ADHD had a significantly higher risk of injuries requiring hospitalization compared to non-ADHD controls.

New research shows pediatric patients with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) are at an increased risk of injuries and hospitalization because of the injuries.

A team, led by Ming-Shang Pai, MS, Department of Psychiatry, Taoyuan Armed Forces General Hospital, evaluated the risk of injuries requiring hospitalization among pediatric patients with and without ADHD and assessed the effects of medication on the risk reduction of patients with ADHD.

Prone to Injuries

Patients with ADHD are often prone to injuries and frequently require treatment with hospital admission.

In the retrospective population-based cohort study, the investigators used data from the Taiwan National Health Insurance Research Database between 2005-2012. There were 4658 patients with ADHD aged 6-18 years included in the study, which were matched with 18,632 sex-, age- and index day-matched non-ADHD control participants.

Each participant was followed until the end of 2013 to compare the risk of injuries requiring hospitalization.

The investigators determined the hazard ratio and confidence intervals after adjusting for confounders using Cox regression analysis.

The Risk

The results show pediatric patients with ADHD had a significantly higher risk of injuries requiring hospitalization compared to non-ADHD controls (HR, 1.39; 95% CI, 1.12–1.72).

This group also had a higher risk, particularly in males and adolescent subgroups.

Patients with ADHD who were long-term users of ADHD medication also had a lower risk of injuries requiring hospitalization compared to nonusers (HR, 0.51; 95% CI, 0.30–0.85).

“Healthcare providers should be aware of the potential risk of injury in patients with ADHD and highlight the importance of the duration and compliance with medication treatment,” the authors wrote.

ADHD and Health

Last year, investigators found ADHD is linked to several different physical health conditions that could remain prevalent throughout life.

ADHD might increase the risk of several other physical health conditions. However, there are very few conditions that have been thoroughly studied in relationship with ADHD and little research on this link in older ADHD patients.

A team, led by Ebba Du Rietz, PhD, Department of Medical Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Karolinska Institutet, investigated the phenotypic and aetiological associations between ADHD and different physical health conditions across adulthood.

A total of 4.7 million individuals were identified, who formed 4.3 million unique sibling pairs and 1.8 million family clusters. The mean age of the patient population was 47 years old.

Adults with ADHD had increased risk for 34 of the 35 physical conditions, compared to individuals without ADHD. The strongest association was with nervous system disorders including sleep disorder, epilepsy, and dementia (OR, 1.50-4.62) and respiratory diseases, such as asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary diseases (OR, 2.42.-3.24).

A sex-stratified analysis showed similar patterns between male and female participants.

However, there was a stronger cross-disorder association found between full-siblings than between half-siblings for nervous system, respiratory, musculoskeletal, and metabolic diseases (<0.007).

The study, “Risk of injuries requiring hospitalization in attention deficit hyperactivity disorder and the preventive effects of medication,” was published online in Psychiatry and Clinical Neurosciences.

This article was published by our sister publication HCP Live.