View Full Version : Methylphenidate 'normalizes' Brain Function in Kids with ADHD

05-10-13, 11:25 PM
I found this interesting, and also supportive of the notion that ADHD meds really are correcting a deficit, not giving ADHD people the same boost they would for those without ADHD.

In a research review, Dr Moore and colleagues identified nine previous studies using fMRI to study patterns of brain activation in response to a single dose of methylphenidate. Perhaps best known by the brand name Ritalin, methylphenidate is a common and effective treatment for ADHD. "Although methylphenidate has been shown to significantly improve the behavioral symptoms associated with ADHD, both the mechanism behind its therapeutic effect and its direct effects on brain function are unknown," the researchers write.

The studies evaluated methylphenidate-induced fMRI changes in various brain areas, as the participants performed different types of tasks. Most of the studies included adolescent boys with ADHD, along with matched groups of young people without ADHD.
Methylphenidate altered activation patterns in widely distributed areas of the brain in ADHD patients, the results showed. The main brain areas involved were the frontal lobes, the basal ganglia, and cerebellum: "Abnormalities in these regions have all been implicated in patients with ADHD," Dr Moore and coauthors write.
Different areas were activated during different types of fMRI tasks. Several studies assessed performance on "inhibitory control" tasks -- the ability to control certain types of accustomed ("prepotent") responses. In three out of five studies, methylphenidate "at least partially normalized" brain activation in ADHD patients, compared to healthy young people.

Different Tasks Affect Different Brain Areas
A few studies showed similar normalization of brain responses with methylphenidate on tasks of selective attention and time perception -- although not on tasks evaluating working memory. Methylphenidate mainly affected activation in the frontal lobes during inhibitory control tasks. During selective attention tasks, a wider range of brain areas were affected.

05-11-13, 03:02 AM
Shame the effects only last for as long as the medication is taken. Studies show that people with ADHD get mental fatigue and find it hard to sustain mental effort because different parts of the brain are used for different tasks and what should happen is that different areas of the brain are at "turn on" for a task and then "turn off" if a different part of the brain is needed.

Thus some parts are resting whilst some are active. With adhd there is a dysregulation so parts of the brain that should "turn off" are active when they should be resting. Thatīs why kids canīt sustain mental effort for as long as NTīs so yes this drug helps with that.

05-11-13, 03:09 AM
How about Adderall/Dexedrine?
I'm curious about it.