Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Long-Term Stimulant Use Doesn't Cause Blood-Pressure Spike

With stimulant medications an increasingly popular treatment for children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), concerns have been raised about whether their use over the long term will raise a child's risk of developing hypertension. Benedetto Vitiello, M.D., chief of the Child and Adolescent Treatment and Preventive Intervention Research Branch of the National Institute of Mental Health, led a 10-year study to assess whether such a risk exists. In a report in the American Journal of Psychiatry, he and his colleagues reported that they did not find a link between long-term stimulant use for ADHD and elevated blood pressure in the hypertensive or prehypertensive range. They did, however, find that greater cumulative stimulant use was linked to a higher heart rate at years 3 and 8 of the 10-year study.

Read more about this study in the current issue of Psychiatric News here, and read the results of a study that assessed cardiovascular safety of methylphenidate use in adults here

(image: Kamira/Shutterstock.com)


The content of Psychiatric News does not necessarily reflect the views of APA or the editors. Unless so stated, neither Psychiatric News nor APA guarantees, warrants, or endorses information or advertising in this newspaper. Clinical opinions are not peer reviewed and thus should be independently verified.