Kids With ADHD Have Higher Healthcare Costs
Also, did treatment for ADHD make any difference in numbers of hospital visits? Did visits decline after treatment began? In her study, some children with ADHD diagnoses were not treated for the disorder. Some children with ADHD may not have been diagnosed, she says.
"Our study raises many more questions than it answers," Leibson tells WebMD. "But with further analysis, we can tease some of those answers out."
Abramowitz questions whether families living within driving distance of the Mayo Clinic are representative of the general population across the U.S.
"They conducted this study in a very health-conscious community, she says. "People in that community, with their rather unique access to information about healthcare, may be more likely to go to a doctor when something is wrong. ... Maybe some of these parents aren't so typical."
"It's true that those in our study were 95% Caucasian ... and that we do have a large population in the healthcare profession," Leibson says. "So the sensitivity to these healthcare issues might be heightened. But the prevalence of ADHD we found was comparable to other geographical areas, which shows we are not under- or overdiagnosing ADHD."
Researchers received funding for this study from Eli Lilly Co. and from the Public Health Service of the National Institutes of Health.