Neuroanatomical Differences in Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder: Influence of Stimulant Medication Administration

6113 Words Mar 19th, 2015 25 Pages
Running head: Neuroanatomical Differences in ADHD

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Neuroanatomical Differences in Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder: Influence of Stimulant Medication Administration

Zach Grice-Patil University of Minnesota

Neuroanatomical Differences in ADHD Abstract: Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder is a common psychological disorder with a pathophysiology that is not well understood. The choice treatment is with strong psychoactive stimulants (methylphenidate), which has helped to establish much of the known pathophysiology of the disorder. Medication administration to young children is becoming exceedingly common and it is suspected here that methylphenidate has effects on neurodevelopmental processes. Much of the imaging data
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daycare, etc.) (American Psychological Association, 2000). The pathophysiology of this disorder is not well understood and is still under investigation (Arneston, 2009). There is strong evidence suggesting significant differences in structure and function within certain brain regions of children, adolescents, and adults diagnosed with ADHD (Konrad et al., 2009). Psychoactive stimulants, namely methylphenidate are the choice medication prescribed to individuals with ADHD and also play an important role in mediating neurodevelopmental neurochemicals. These medications include: methylphenidate, dextroamphetamine, and a mixture of amphetamine salts (note: these generic names represent the various brand named substances available such as Ritalin, Concerta, Adderall, Dexedrine, etc.) Faraone (2009) conducted a meta-analysis of the efficacy of these drugs and found that there are no significant differences on the behavioral level among the efficacy of either substance over another. Each of these types of drugs works to increase or prolong the bioavailability of catecholamines, namely dopamine, in the synaptic cleft or extracellular space. Discussed in a review by Ikemoto (2007), dopamine

Neuroanatomical Differences in ADHD is a catecholamine neurotransmitter implicated in the reward pathway within

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