New research from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has found that drugs prescribed to treat Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) can cause hallucinations in children, even when taken as directed. Children have hallucinated worms, bugs or snakes crawling on them while under the influence of this prescribed medication.
49 clinical studies were conducted by drug makers, and the results showed they can cause psychosis and mania in some patients, even those without obvious risk factors. The following ADHD drugs were studied: Novartis AG’s Ritalin and Focalin XR, Shire Plc’s Adderall XR and Daytrana patch, Johnson & Johnson’s Concerta, Eli Lilly and Co’s Strattera and Celltech Pharmaceuticals Inc’s Metadate CD.
Patients and physicians should be aware of the possibility that psychiatric symptoms consistent with psychosis or mania.
As a parent, I am would seek alternative treatments if I had a child with ADHD, such as removing food coloring and additives from their diet. Since I am not such a parent, of course I can’t speak first hand about the neccessity of such medication, but the research is cause for alarm, especially since the drugmakers themselves have found these results. I am always amazed that the FDA relies on drug companies to conduct their own research. There is certainly a conflict of interest there, so when they actually do find harmful side effects, it should be taken seriously.
Image: thp365 on Flickr under a Creative Commons License