Monday, November 10, 2008
THURSDAY, Nov. 6 (HealthDay News) -- Very young children who sustain a head injury may be more likely to be diagnosed with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) later, researchers report.
The head injury is not a cause of ADHD, but rather a result of excessive risk-taking, according to the paper published in the Nov. 8 online edition of the British Medical Journal.
"There have been studies done that link moderate to severe traumatic brain injury in older children to ADHD," said lead researcher Dr. Heather Keenan, an associate professor of pediatrics at the University of Utah in Salt Lake City. "There has been some suggestion that mild traumatic brain injury could also be linked to ADHD."
The researchers wanted to know whether or not head injury that occurs before the age of 2 might cause ADHD. A diagnosis of ADHD cannot be made before that age, Keenan noted.
"It is hard to figure this out, because we don't know whether or not the kids would have gone on to develop ADHD regardless of the head injury," Keenan said.
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