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Author(s):

Lily Hechtman

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780190213589.003.0010
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date: 25 June 2019

Outcomes in adults with ADHD are not uniform. They vary and can be generally described as falling into three groups: (1) those who have fairly normal outcome that does not differ from matched normal controls (about 30%) (Weiss & Hechtman, 1993); (2) those who continue to have significant symptoms of the syndrome with impaired functioning in academic, occupational, social, and emotional domains (50% of the group); and finally, (3) a small subgroup, about 10% to 20%, who have significant negative outcome with poor educational attainment, poor work history, marked unemployment, significant alcohol/substance use disorder, and important psychiatric and antisocial symptoms. Given that ADHD is a chronic condition that continues into adulthood, treatment (both medication and psychosocial treatments) needs to address both ADHD and comorbid conditions and needs to be ongoing with varying intensity and careful follow-up. Only with such an approach can we hope to improve adult outcomes for patients with ADHD.

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