First ADHD Drug Effectiveness Study on College Students

ADHDAttention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is one of the most common disorders of childhood. But symptoms of ADHD often linger into adulthood.

Approximately 2 to 4 percent of college students report significant symptoms of ADHD such as difficulty with attention, impulse control, and restlessness.

Although there is a great deal of information about childhood and adult ADHD and treatments, there’s scarce information about the effectiveness of medication on college students with ADHD.

That is about to change thanks to Lisa Weyandt, associate professor of psychology and one of the nation’s leading researchers on ADHD in college students, who launched a study in the fall to test the effectiveness of the stimulant medication, Vyvanse™, on college students with ADHD. It is the first such study for this population. Weyandt was awarded a grant from Shire Development, Inc., to support the study.

“Twenty five to 40 percent of college students who receive disability support services receive it for ADHD,” Weyandt said.

The URI professor is collaborating with ADHD expert George DuPaul at Lehigh University. “Many colleges and universities offer resources to help students with ADHD from a functional standpoint. However, we are the first to look at the impact of medication to treat the symptoms of ADHD, ” he said.

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