ADHD in People with Intellectual Disabilities - the forgotten diagnosis

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is a neurodevelopmental disorder which manifests as an impairment in attention, hyperactivity and/or impulsivity. Prevalence of ADHD in general population is estimated to be around 5%. However, prevalence of ADHD in ID population is estimated to be much higher. Some studies estimate a prevalence rate 20% for people with ID. Diagnosis of ADHD in adult has gradually increased with increasing awareness and specialist training. However, diagnosis of ADHD in people with ID still remains very low. One of the reasons for reduced rate of diagnosis is due to the complexity of diagnosing ADHD in people with ID. For an example, symptoms of ADHD such as inattention can be an inherent difficulty in a person with ID.  ADHD in ID can present in different ways. Challenging behaviour can be one of the presentations. There is growing evidence that diagnosis and treatment of ADHD in people with ID can make a significant improvement in functional impairment and quality of life. Pharmacological treatment of ADHD in ID is similar to non ID population. This talk will focus on the diagnosis of ADHD in people with ID and treatment.

Dr. Bhathika Perera

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