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Children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) have higher medical costs than children without ADHD, according to a recent study reported in the Journal of the American Medical Association. Researchers found that children with ADHD had more injuries and more illnesses than other children and total medical costs more than double those of other children.
Researchers followed 4,880 children born in Rochester, NY, between 1976 and 1982 and followed them through 1995 using school and medical records to identify those with ADHD. Among the 4,119 children who remained in the Rochester area through 1995, 7.5%, or 309, met criteria for ADHD.
Researchers compared children with ADHD to those without and found the following:
Higher costs remained true even for ADHD children without hospital and ED admissions. For the subset of children without admissions, the median 1987 medical costs were $128 for children with ADHD compared to $65 for patients without ADHD.
[See: Leibson CL, Katusic SK, Barbaresi WJ, et al. Use and costs of medical care for children and adolescents with and without attention-deficit/ hyperactivity disorder. JAMA 2001; 285:60-66.]