Comorbidity is the rule, not the exception, in most psychiatric practices. Clinicians today must possess a thorough and nuanced understanding of disparate conditions in order to effectively diagnose and treat their patients’ symptoms attention deficit disorder (ADHD or ADD).This is the overarching principle of Dr. Anthony Rostain, professor of psychiatry and pediatrics at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and attending and supervising psychiatrist at the Children’s Hospital of Pennsylvania and the University of Pennsylvania Health System.
Dr. Rostain — who is triple boarded in pediatrics, adult psychiatry, and child and adolescent psychiatry — was interviewed recently for an Ask the Experts webinar hosted by The American Professional Society of ADHD and Related Disorders (APSARD). This is the first of five articles based on his responses to questions from Dr.
Gregory Mattingly of Washington University School of Medicine about aspects of treating ADHD. This article is presented for general educational purposes, not medical advice.Dr. Mattingly: Mood disorders, bipolar disorder, and emotional dysregulation all occur with great regularity alongside symptoms of ADHD.
As a clinician, how do you balance treating your patients for ADHD and for these and other comorbid conditions?Dr. Rostain: The majority of patients seeking psychiatric treatment arrive with not just attention deficit disorder, but also a variety of mood disorders, anxiety disorders, substance use disorders, and the like. As clinicians, we must expect that adults with ADHD — particularly those who have not ever been treated or those who have been treated for ADHD but continue to experience impairing symptoms of the disorder — will
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