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Obese children should be screened for ADHD

Abstract: Obese children have a much larger risk for also having ADHD.

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Obese children should be screened for ADHD

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Question(s): 
Written by: Martin Winkler
First version: 22 Jul 2008.
Latest revision: 07 Aug 2008.

Should I make a clinical examination for ADHD for my obese child?

Answer:

According to new research results children with clinical relevant obesity have a much higher risk to have comorbid ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder). Isreali researcher Dr. Agarnat and her colleagues made an evaluation of obese school-aged children who had been hospitalized. They found a significant higher prevalence of ADHD among these obesese children (57,7%) than in average population (5-10 %). They think that this correlation might proove a causal relationship

According to other research adhd and obesity (and binge eating disorder) might be linked. So it is worth to consider a childhood neurobiological disorder if the child has severe obesity. This might be a relevant clue for the therapy. Especially girls with ADHD can have different symptoms (inattentive types) without obvious motoric hyperactivity. So the diagnosis is still very often missed.

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