Eugenia Chan, MD, MPH: Treating Complex ADHD in Pediatrics


The AAP guidelines for ADHD were first released in 2000 and last updated in 2019.

Enhanced knowledge and guidance have made screening, diagnosing, and treating pediatric patients with complex attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) much easier and more effective.

In fact, this advancement might harken back to when the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) first released guidelines on standard ADHD in 2000 and recommended treatment in 2001.

There has been 2 subsequent revisions to the guidelines since they first came out, with the most recent revision occurring in 2019, including more assistance on complex ADHD.

During the annual American Academy of Pediatrics 2021 virtual meeting, Eugenia Chan, MD, MPH, assistant professor of pediatrics, Harvard Medical School, discussed some new and update clinical practice guidelines and how they will impact care of this patient population.

Chan explained in an interview with HCPLive®, how far the field has come in treating complex ADHD.

“The real advances in ADHD care started maybe 20 years ago when the AAP guidelines first came out,” Chan said. “There’s always been a feeling amongst clinicians that we need more detail, we need more help with the kids who are complex.”

An ADHD case can be deemed complex based on comorbid conditions or are complex for other reasons, including age, other complex medical or developmental conditions, or complex psychosocial circumstances.

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