Friday, November 11, 2005

Many Bipolar Adults Have ADHD

Dr. William Niederhut, a Denver psychiatrist and Harvard Medical graduate, claims in a recent book that many adults who suffer bipolar disorders may also have ADHD. They are suffering an inherited disorder which he calls Childhood-Onset Bipolar Attention-Deficit syndrome. He says that with this, adults usually experience episodic depression, irritability and anxiety in their childhood years, along with symptoms of ADHD. The ADHD prevents them from responding fully to treatments using antidepressants or mood stabilizers.
First identified in children by researchers at Harvard a decade ago, psychiatrists studying bipolar disorders have been slow to recognize and treat successfully the syndrome in adults. The adult form of this has not even been clearly named. Dr. Niederhut became interested in this research two years ago after both of his daughters were diagnosed with childhood bipolar disorders. Then he recognized a mild form of this syndrome in himself, and he began to identify its features in many of his adult patients. He found that the syndrome is quite common in adults and can be successfully treated, often with dramatic results. Functioning better at work and in their personal lives, many of his patients now feel well for the first time in their lives. They no longer have the symptoms of depression, ADHD or mania with the proper treatment. His new book is called, "The COBAD Syndrome: New Hope for People Suffering from the Inherited Syndrome of Childhood-Onset Bipolar Disorder with ADHD." Here he has published his findings from the past two years along with a summary of the research data on the subject. His book calls for a paradigm shift in bipolar diagnosis and treatment. Because ADHD is an integral, disabling part of the disorder, psychiatrists need to identify and treat it. They need to do more than stabilize moods for those with this disorder.

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