About My Health Careers Internship MedBlogs Contact us
Medindia LOGIN REGISTER
Advertisement

Use of Psychotropic Medication Including Stimulants, in Young Children Leveling Off

by Bidita Debnath on September 30, 2013 at 11:24 PM
Font : A-A+

 Use of Psychotropic Medication Including Stimulants, in Young Children Leveling Off

In very young children, the use of psychotropic prescription medications to treat ADHD, mood disorders, anxiety and other mental health disorders appears to have leveled off.

A national study of 2 to 5 year olds shows that overall psychotropic prescription use peaked in 2002-2005, then leveled off from 2006-2009. The researchers also discovered increased use of these medications among boys, white children and those without private health insurance during the 16-year study period, 1994-2009.

Advertisement

The Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center study is published online in the journal Pediatrics.

"The likelihood of receiving a behavioral diagnosis increased in 2006 to 2009, but this was not accompanied by an increased propensity toward psychotropic prescription," says Tanya Froehlich, MD, a pediatrician at Cincinnati Children's and the study's senior author. "In fact, the likelihood of psychotropic use in 2006-2009 was half that of the 1994-1997 period among those with a behavioral diagnosis."
Advertisement

Psychotropic usage decreased from 43 percent of those with one or more behavioral diagnoses in 1994-1997 to 29 percent in 2006-2009.

Commonly prescribed psychotropic medications fall into several categories, including both typical and atypical antipsychotics, antidepressants, antianxiety agents, stimulants and mood stabilizers. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has approved few of these medications for the preschool age group, yet previous studies documented two to threefold increases in psychotropic prescriptions for preschool children between 1991 and 2001.

The Cincinnati Children's researchers studied data from two national surveys that collect information on patient visits to office-based physician practices and hospital-based outpatient clinics throughout the United States. The researchers studied data on more than 43,000 young children.

It is likely that the use of psychotropic medications leveled off due to numerous warnings issued in the mid to late 2000s. These include a 2004 FDA "black box" warning regarding suicidality risk, 2005 public health advisory regarding potential for cardiovascular risks involving amphetamines, and a 2006 FDA Advisory Committee recommendation (later reversed) for a black box warning on psychostimulants linking these drugs to possible heart problems.

Additional research is needed, says Dr. Froehlich, to determine why boys, white children and those without private health insurance are more likely to receive these medications and to determine their appropriateness.

"Our findings underscore the need to ensure that doctors of very young children who are diagnosing ADHD, the most common diagnosis, and prescribing stimulants, the most common psychotropic medications, are using the most up-to-date and stringent diagnostic criteria and clinical practice guidelines," says Dr. Froehlich. "Furthermore, given the continued use of psychotropic medications in very young children and concerns regarding their effects on the developing brain, future studies on the long-term effects of psychotropic medication use in this age group are essential."

Source: Eurekalert
Advertisement

Advertisement
News A-Z
A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
Advertisement
News Category
What's New on Medindia
Woman with Rare Spinal Cord Defect from Birth Sues Doctor
Toothache
World AIDS Day 2021 - End Inequalities, End AIDS
View all

Medindia Newsletters Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!
Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

More News on:
Drug Toxicity Height and Weight-Kids Healthy Living 

Recommended Reading
Music: Key to Mental Health
A new study finds that the risk of mental decline through age is less in people who play musical ......
Study Finds People in Debt More Than Thrice Likely to Suffer from Mental Health Problems
A new study has found people in debt are more than three times more likely to suffer from a mental ....
Mental Health Component in School-Based Lifestyle Programs can be Beneficial for Teens
School-going teens who take part in lifestyle programs, which include a mental health component, ......
Study Points to Better Mental Health With LSD
A recent study carried out by scientists at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology ......
Drug Toxicity
Drug toxicity is an adverse reaction of the body towards a drug that results as a side effect of a d...

Disclaimer - All information and content on this site are for information and educational purposes only. The information should not be used for either diagnosis or treatment or both for any health related problem or disease. Always seek the advice of a qualified physician for medical diagnosis and treatment. Full Disclaimer

© All Rights Reserved 1997 - 2021

This site uses cookies to deliver our services. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use