Atomoxetine in the Treatment of the Most Common Comorbid Disorders of Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, Oppositional Defiant Disorder and Anxiety Disorders

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Abstract

Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in childhood or adolescence is associated with a significantly higher lifetime risk of oppositional defiant disorder, anxiety disorder, conduct disorder, among others. Reports of co-morbidity rates are variable and influenced by assesment methodology and refferal bias, and may reflect lifetime rates within clinical groups. Up-to date studies revealed that as many as 85% of patients with ADHD have at least one psychiatric comorbidity and approximately 60% have at least two. Research and clinical practice has shown that having multiple co-existing psychiatric problems increase the severity of ADHD and behavioural problems, and is associated with incereased psychosocial impairment. The high rate of psychiatric problems co-occuring with ADHD has strong implications for the management of these patients. The presence of co-existing psychiatric conditions may moderate the response to treatment of ADHD and ADHD treatments may adversely affect and exacerbate the symptoms of the co-morbit condition. The aim of this article was to summarize the use of atomoxetine in the most frequent co-morbid disorders accompaining ADHD, ODD (oppositional defiant disorder) and anxiety, and to emphazise decrease of co-morbid symptoms with treatment of atomoxetine what exhort us to think about them as about possible subtypes of ADHD.

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