View Full Version : Son diagnosed with hyperactivity, but not ADHD


DebbieB
07-28-15, 11:26 AM
Hi everyone. I have a 7 year old son who was just tested for ADHD at the request of his school and counselor. He had a tough year in first grade wtih fidgeting, tapping his feet, constant talking, and then it eventually progressed to him becoming defiant with the teacher and not following directions. (I think he was so frustrated wtih getting in trouble and being reprimanded every day that he became oppositional).

The doctor who tested him saw him over two days and all the testing came back showing that he does NOT have ADHD. He performed above average on all the testing and showed excellent focus and attentoin skills. But he clearly has hyperactivity (but I knew that before the doctor even told me!). :)

I have searched high and low in the library as well as on line to find articles on children who have hyperactivity alone, and notADHD. I can't seem to find anything. I'm curious if anybody here has any experience wtih that. My biggest concern is that because he's missing the attention-deficit component, his school is probably going to deny him a 504 plan. I'm almost positive without some sort of accomodations made for him in 2nd grade he is going to have another miserable year at school.

Thank you.

BellaVita
07-28-15, 11:31 AM
There are no "tests" for ADHD.

And many ADHD'ers who DO get tested, do extremely well on those tests.

Many of us do much better on tests than in real-world settings.

Also, could it be that he has ADHD - the hyperactive kind?

Maybe go and get a second opinion.

Best wishes! :)

sarahsweets
07-28-15, 11:52 AM
There are no tests for adhd and even if you did well on these tests it wouldnt mean you didnt have adhd. There are three subsets. The disorder is always called adhd but there is adhd -PI( primarily inattentive) adhd -c (combined inattentive and hyperactive) and adhd -h (hyperactive). I find it extremely hard to believe that a doctor would diagnose a child with hyperactivity and not adhd. In fact, I didnt even know you could be diagnosed as just hyperactive. What is his suggested treatment for this?
One thing to remember is, if the school is paying for this and handling it, their best interest is to diagnose as few kids as possible because special services are expensive and require alot of followup. I am not saying this as a conspiracy theory, but overall with school districts, money talks. And you dont have to take their word for sh*t. You can get a second opinion that will trump their findings. Check out the website, wrights law.

DebbieB
07-28-15, 12:18 PM
Well now I am completely confused as both the school and his private counselor suggested ADHD "testing." I do know that my son was given the WRAML-2, but I don't recall the other "tests." And this was actually a private doctor I took my son too - the school did not pay for him to be evaluated.

If there are no actual tests for ADHD, how does a child actually get an official diagnosis of such? Personally I don't think he has ADHD, although the school seems to. Attention, focus and concentration have not been a problem for him....it's simply that he has to be in constant motion. His behavior is quite good at home - but there's something in the classroom setting that seems to trigger the bad behavior.

To answer your question Sarahsweets, the doctor suggested treatment was either medication or neurobehavioral biofeedback (I might be saying that wrong). I don't plan on doing either. The doctor told me my son was a "puzzle" as he said most kids with the level of hyperactivity my son showed during his 2 sessions perform at a much lower level than my son did. And because of his high score, he couldn't give him a diagnosis of ADHD.

Thank you both for your input. I guess I'll wait until I get the doctor's written report to present to the school and see what happens. Hopefully they are willing to make some sort of adjustment for him to allow him to get up and move more.

LynneC
07-28-15, 03:02 PM
Hi Debbie and welcome... :)
Here's a link to the CDC website that described how to determine if a person has ADHD. Essentially, it is a checklist of symptoms, and 6 must be present in both the home setting and other settings (school) for a diagnosis.
Take a look and see if these symptoms are applicable...

http://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/adhd/diagnosis.html

LynneC
07-28-15, 03:17 PM
If you Google 'fidget aids for Adhd kids' you will find lots of hits for items that can help a kid to fidget constructively. These toys can help keep a child on task and help to keep him from getting frustrated. I suspect that his 'bad behavior' in the classroom is triggered by frustration at not being able to move around.

There is something called a wobble chair that might help, or sitting on a balance ball instead of a seat might work too.

If your son doesn't meet the diagnostic criteria for ADHD you may want to consider meeting with the school counselor and his teacher right when school starts to come up with a plan that will allow him to move around enough that he is able to do his work without getting frustrated.

DebbieB
07-28-15, 04:05 PM
Thank you LynneC. My son's counselor thinks the exact same thing - that the behavior in school is stemming from frustration in school. His behavior is really not an issue at home.

Last year the school counselor suggested a beanbag chair for him in the class, but the first grade teacher said no because the other children would want to use it. The teacher was quite resistent to any sugestion I made. :(

But my plan is to meet with the principal and his new 2nd grade teacher prior to school starting and work out some sort of plan for him. If not an actual 504, then at least some sort of accomodation for him to get up and move more. And if they are not on board, my plan is to try home schooling...so I'm keeping that optoin on the back burner.

And thank you for the link on how to determine ADHD. My son has 4 on the checklist for the hyperactivity scale, and 2 symptoms that only occur very seldom (so I could almost say they don't apply). And on the other scales he only had 1 or 2, so they didn't apply to him at all. Very useful for my own knowledge.

namazu
07-28-15, 05:32 PM
To build on what LynneC mentioned about diagnosis --

It's based on those diagnostic criteria, but involves more than simply going down a checklist.

The current best practices for diagnosing ADHD involve taking a complete medical, developmental, educational, social, and family history, and seeking information on current behavior from home, school, and social settings. The clinician would be looking for evidence of ADHD symptoms and impairment in real-life settings, and also trying to consider other causes for the behavior (e.g. chaotic family situation, boredom, blood sugar issues, whatever).

The kind of psychoeducational testing you describe is commonly suggested, but not actually required, to complement the rest of the evaluation process. It can help to rule in/out limited intellectual abilities, learning disabilities, motor problems, etc., and give a better sense of your son's cognitive functioning.

Your plan to approach the teacher and try to work out informal accommodations sounds good. Fidget toys, a modified chair that allows him to expend energy without distracting other students, making sure he isn't denied recess for "bad behavior", etc. may all help.

Also, it might be revealing to ask your son about it. Is he bored and in need of a challenge? Does he have to pee more often than other kids? Is he a natural musician with a song always running through his head? Does he just need to wiggle? Is it harder to sit still in certain classes or at certain times of day?

It could be helpful, if you haven't done so already, to make an appointment with your child's physician to rule out an overactive thyroid, blood sugar issues, and some of the other medical issues that can result in physical hyperactivity. Likewise, some kids are hypersensitive to food additives like certain colorings. Though this isn't the cause of most ADHD, eliminating these from the diet can lead to a marked improvement in behavior in some kids.

Best wishes to your family.

hg12345
07-28-15, 09:36 PM
I was tested as child-8 yrs old- and it was also negative but looking back bow, man they were wrong. I had someone sit in my classroom and watch me and they said that I don't have adhd. Somehow at age 21 I "developed it". In other words, they were wring when they said that I was just a very gifted, energetic child. Chances r that ur son has adhd.

sarahsweets
07-29-15, 04:30 AM
I think with the subtypes I mentioned that the hyperactivity could honestly be related to adhd.

LynneC
07-29-15, 12:45 PM
Last year the school counselor suggested a beanbag chair for him in the class, but the first grade teacher said no because the other children would want to use it. The teacher was quite resistent to any sugestion I made. :(

But my plan is to meet with the principal and his new 2nd grade teacher prior to school starting and work out some sort of plan for him. If not an actual 504, then at least some sort of accomodation for him to get up and move more. And if they are not on board, my plan is to try home schooling...so I'm keeping that optoin on the back burner.


The first grade teacher sounds like she was a royal pain...
Meeting with the principal and his new teacher is a great place to start. I found that if I communicated closely with my DS's teachers in elementary school, most were willing and able to accommodate his hyperactivity and lack of focus and did not reprimand him for what were obviously behaviors that he was not able to control.

Despite his hyperactivity, was he(your son) able to complete his classroom work in a timely fashion and is he at or above grade level in reading and math?

Little Missy
07-29-15, 12:56 PM
Was it an M.D. doctor or the doctor who goes by Dr.?

zette93
07-30-15, 09:43 AM
Was there a questionaire sent to both home and school that had a lot of the same items as the checklist LynneC posted? The two my son had are the Conners and BRIEF.

If the school requires an ADHD diagnosis for a 504, I'd go get a second opinion.

Russell Barkley is a prominent ADHD researcher, and he says that tests of cognitive processing (memory, numbers reversed, etc.) like the WRAML2 are not valid instruments for diagnosing ADHD. On YouTube he's made available a very dry, boring lecture he gives to professionals about diagnosis:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C-KHlnbndME&list=PLq7AkHopLIr8_1whMzHjqmamYDWcVcDv6&index=12

Barkley is much more entertaining when lecturing for a general audience. He's got a great lecture called Essential Ideas for Parents that goes into the symptoms, neurology, and treatment in depth: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SCAGc-rkIfo

zette93
07-30-15, 09:50 AM
It sounds like he is in constant motion at home, but it isn't a problem there because you don't require him to sit still and do paperwork. How much homework did he have and how did it go?

One thing to look closely at is whether he is showing any difficulties with reading, spelling, or handwriting. Dyslexia is hugely underdiagnosed, and the frustration and anxiety from not being able to do the expected schoolwork can cause a child to act in ways that look very ADHD. Also, about 50% of kids with ADHD have dyslexia or another learning issue. Here's a list of warning signs: http://www.bartonreading.com/pdf/Dys%20warning%20signs.pdf

I'd also recommend that you read the book Lost at School. The author has a website with a lot of free videos and podcasts here: http://www.livesinthebalance.org/walking-tour-parents

DebbieB
07-30-15, 10:59 AM
Despite his hyperactivity, was he(your son) able to complete his classroom work in a timely fashion and is he at or above grade level in reading and math?

My son is above grade level for reading and at grade level for math. I never had a problem with getting his homework done, but toward the end of first grade I started getting some of his classroom work sent home to be finished as the teacher would send him off to the principal's office for misbehavior and he didn't have the time to complete it at school.

DebbieB
07-30-15, 11:01 AM
Was it an M.D. doctor or the doctor who goes by Dr.?

The doctor I took him to has a Ph.D. and ABPP degree. He's a psychologist and neuropsychologist.

DebbieB
07-30-15, 11:04 AM
Was there a questionaire sent to both home and school that had a lot of the same items as the checklist LynneC posted? The two my son had are the Conners and BRIEF.

If the school requires an ADHD diagnosis for a 504, I'd go get a second opinion.


Me, my husband and the teacher did complete a Connors for my son. The teachers scores were much higher than ours were.

Thank you for the video link!

DebbieB
07-30-15, 11:07 AM
It sounds like he is in constant motion at home, but it isn't a problem there because you don't require him to sit still and do paperwork. How much homework did he have and how did it go?

One thing to look closely at is whether he is showing any difficulties with reading, spelling, or handwriting. Dyslexia is hugely underdiagnosed, and the frustration and anxiety from not being able to do the expected schoolwork can cause a child to act in ways that look very ADHD. Also, about 50% of kids with ADHD have dyslexia or another learning issue. Here's a list of warning signs: http://www.bartonreading.com/pdf/Dys%20warning%20signs.pdf

I'd also recommend that you read the book Lost at School. The author has a website with a lot of free videos and podcasts here: http://www.livesinthebalance.org/walking-tour-parents

Thank you! He didn't get too much homework, but what he did get was always completed in a timely manner and he never complained about doing it. We also did spelling words and math facts nightly which was never a problem. The school environment was always the problem. Having to sit for such a long time and having 17 other "friends" inches away with whom he wanted to talk to and have fun with was just more than he could deal with.

Little Missy
07-30-15, 12:22 PM
The doctor I took him to has a Ph.D. and ABPP degree. He's a psychologist and neuropsychologist.

Her I go off the cuff again.

Unless the Dr. can prescribe you'll be led round for quite a bit. :)

4rch0n4n6313
07-30-15, 01:01 PM
Sounds like me when I was his age. The only thing the diagnosis is good for, is knowing how to approach the problem..i.e more freedom based vs. more structure based treatment. I could be wrong, but the type of ADD your son probably has, will not be effectively treated with a 504, simply because he is so intelligent.

When ADHD causes learning disabilities is when more help is usually available. When ADHD causes giftedness and above average test scores..well..then its a "behavioral issue", and they dont "really have adhd". Teachers dont have as much patients with kids that test well but cant get their homework in as they do with kids who get help with their homework and struggle on tests.

I know when I am learning about something in a classroom environment I get really hyper. though I have no scientific basis for my next words, I offer them as my experience. When I am excited about learning something, and my brain is going full force, all that extra electrical activity leaks into my body, my hand is the first one up to answer a question, I become very emotionally agitated. I was the kid going Ohh-ohh-oohh in 6th grade, if I was really connecting with a subject. I used to do it in bible study this past year, till my pastor pointed it out to me, in a very kind way, that I was a bit to excited. Even now I catch myself.

Does your son ask allot of questions at home? He might get fidgety because of the one sided monologue and would benefit from the type of classroom that is more interactive. there are some good charter schools out there, but the best schools, are an arm a leg and half a head...

4rch0n4n6313
07-30-15, 01:06 PM
The possibility of social interaction also makes me excited, and I tended to be the one who got in trouble for responding when someone else initiated a conversation. What, I was supposed to IGNORE this other PERSON, MY AGE who wanted to TALK to ME...not likely. I have learned my lesson though. Honestly I dont really like people as much as I did when I got in trouble for wanting to talk to them.

4rch0n4n6313
07-30-15, 01:10 PM
I dont recommend any psychotropics for children. Their brains are not fully developed yet, and there is not enough research to insist that medicating children for anything but the most severest of cases is beneficial in the long run. Ultimately it will be the way he learns to structure his environment to highlight his strengths, the support he gets, along with the peers he interacts with, that will ultimately determine his outcome.

Most parents of gifted children end up having to homeschool unless their child happens to conform well to institutionalization. There are many homeschool groups that have like minded parents that can help you make your decision.

DebbieB
07-30-15, 01:27 PM
Does your son ask allot of questions at home? He might get fidgety because of the one sided monologue and would benefit from the type of classroom that is more interactive. there are some good charter schools out there, but the best schools, are an arm a leg and half a head...

Oh YES! He's the King of Questions. He even asks questions that have no answer (at least that I can figure out). Friends have recommended private schools, but that's not even a consideration for us given the cost. Home schooling is something I'm currently looking into if it comes to that. I hate to do it because he would really miss all the socialization at school, but I can't be on speed-dial with the principal for another year. I guess time will tell.

Thank you all for your input, links and recommendations. I appreciate it all very, VERY much. :thankyou:

daveddd
07-30-15, 04:56 PM
The doctor I took him to has a Ph.D. and ABPP degree. He's a psychologist and neuropsychologist.

if you think it isn't correct i would get a second opinion

maybe just try a child psychologist . based off of what barkley says and what other research shows its seems sometimes, neuropsychs attempt to make ADHD something its not

how can you pay attention if you can't be still?

my hyperactivity is definitely most of the reason I'm distracted often

zette93
07-30-15, 09:36 PM
Me, my husband and the teacher did complete a Connors for my son. The teachers scores were much higher than ours were.

Thank you for the video link!

It may be that the teacher's scores were in the range for ADHD but yours were not. Since a diagnosis requires impairment in two settings, your scores may have been low enough that he did not qualify.

Since you do not want to medicate, I would see if the 2nd grade teacher is more willing to try things to manage his need for movement. You might pay for a few sessions with a private OT who works with school age children to observe him at school (if they will allow it) and make suggestions -- wiggle cushion, t-stool, ball chair, theraband, fidgets, cushions, etc.

If school is still unworkable, give serious thought to homeschooling or other change in school setting.

sarahsweets
07-31-15, 04:38 AM
I dont recommend any psychotropics for children. Their brains are not fully developed yet, and there is not enough research to insist that medicating children for anything but the most severest of cases is beneficial in the long run.
What evidence do you have to support this? My son was medicated at age 4 and it saved his life. These medications have been around for years and are considered a first line treatment.

4rch0n4n6313
08-01-15, 11:36 AM
What evidence do you have to support this? My son was medicated at age 4 and it saved his life. These medications have been around for years and are considered a first line treatment.

Here are a few papers that support my statement. Your son is your son, and you didn't ask me what I think about your son, So I wasn't referring to your son. I was referring to the OP's son.

http://dx.doi.org/10.1097/01.chi.0000220851.94392.30

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4197522/

Here is an excerpt from this article.
http://ps.psychiatryonline.org/doi/10.1176/appi.ps.52.9.1179
---------------------------------------------------------
As is true with any newly popularized term, the term "evidence-based" has an almost intuitive ring of credibility to it. It brings to mind images of tree-lined and stately buildings fronted with Grecian columns and filled with persons wearing white coats, speaking in hushed tones, and offering reassurances. But this ring may be hollow. As Montaigne noted, "Nothing is so firmly believed as what we least know," and as Valery warned, "That which has been delivered by everyone, always and everywhere, has every chance of being false."

There are as many definitions of what constitutes "evidence" as there are definitions of what constitutes a "service." More important, the use of the term "evidence-based practice" presupposes agreement as to how the evidence was generated, what the evidence means, and how or when the practice can be implemented.

We suggest that before this term becomes a slogan, it may be wise to examine the presuppositions behind it, acknowledge the limitations of what is sometimes characterized as evidence-based practice, and, in the next generation of services research, attend to implementation issues at the front end.

Much of what passes for research on evidence-based practice in the field of child and adolescent mental health might more aptly be described as clinical treatment efficacy research. In this article we first describe how evidence-based practice is being defined in the field of child and adolescent mental health, the characteristics of children and of services that pose special challenges in creating evidence-based practices, and the state of research evidence for treatments and services. Finally, we explain why healthy skepticism about current evidence-based practices is not unreasonable.
----------------------------------------------------

In my teens I had Dr play psychotropic roulette with me and it further ruined my life beyond my disability. Some drugs can have irreversible long term effects.

They have "evidence based treatment" for short term results..there isnt allot of data on what happens to these kids after a certain age. I know of several adults who were medicated as children and absolutely HATED it.

Is a "calmer child" really worth making a kid feel like a zombie? I guess that depends on the persons values as a family. Many simply dont have the resources to learn play therapy, and the multitude of other techniques available on the internet and community colleges to make things work for their kids.

My mother was one of them..she was a single mom who worker 14 hrs plus a day...

There are situations that are a great deal more "cut and dry", and the kids feel better the adults feel better, and everyone is happier with psychotropic treatment. There are BOTH SIDES, AND BOTH SIDES SHOULD BE CONSIDERED.

The cost/risk/benifit must be properly analyzed before medical treatment is advised. In the OP's case, medication is not something I would recommendt for her son at this point, who is ultimately well behaved except in highly institutionalized settings. Especially if she has the option to home school.

Hml1976
08-07-15, 12:34 PM
This sounds a lot like my son, now 8.5yrs old. L officially had his adhd diagnosis (given when he was 5) removed yesterday by a child psychiatrist. The doctor felt most of his hyperactivity was a result more of his high IQ than any clinical diagnosis. This doesn't mean he doesn't have issues, he has a tic disorder, he can be impulsive, and he has trouble socially. The doctor recommended social skills therapy and to come back if attention ever became an issue in the future.

Edited to add: we did start L in a private school last year that specializes in gifted kids. It's an alternative program and they're more tolerant of him. There are also 3 recesses a day and PE every day which he needs. I would see if there are similar schools near you and look at their financial aid programs, most private schools have generous aid for kids that would fit well in their program. Best of luck!

sarahsweets
08-09-15, 06:51 AM
In my teens I had Dr play psychotropic roulette with me and it further ruined my life beyond my disability. Some drugs can have irreversible long term effects.

They have "evidence based treatment" for short term results..there isnt allot of data on what happens to these kids after a certain age

If as you say there isnt alot of data on what happens to kids after a certain age then how can you support what it is that you are saying?

I know of several adults who were medicated as children and absolutely HATED it.
That my be true but the amount of adults who were or wish they were medicated I would bet outweighs those that feel it screwed them over. JMO.

Is a "calmer child" really worth making a kid feel like a zombie?
Its stuff like this that makes me nuts. ANYONE who thinks that the purpose of medicating a child is to make them calmer, doesnt know what medication is for, and probably doesnt know jack about adhd, I suggest you read a sticky I wrote, it can better explain what I meant. And why do you think the alternative for calm is a child feeling like a zombie? Why do you think parents would rather have a zombie, or even having the term zombie used to describe their medicated kids?
I guess that depends on the persons values as a family. Many simply dont have the resources to learn play therapy, and the multitude of other techniques available on the internet and community colleges to make things work for their kids.
Again, you are making assumptions. Medication doesnt take the place of behavior modifications or family values. It isnt always a matter of resources. There are many people that cant afford a doctor or have poor health insurance and all they can do is use the techniques you are referring to. And they need help.


There are situations that are a great deal more "cut and dry", and the kids feel better the adults feel better, and everyone is happier with psychotropic treatment. There are BOTH SIDES, AND BOTH SIDES SHOULD BE CONSIDERED.
You say both sides should be considered, but you already have a bias and misinformation that you base your view of medication on. Just because it happened to you doesnt mean its that way for most.

The cost/risk/benifit must be properly analyzed before medical treatment is advised. In the OP's case, medication is not something I would recommendt for her son at this point, who is ultimately well behaved except in highly institutionalized settings. Especially if she has the option to home school.
Of course risk assessment is necessary and with regards to the op maybe not necessary but the information you present as a back up for the fear mongering is your experience which is entirely subjective.

4rch0n4n6313
08-11-15, 01:05 AM
I had ADHD growing up, my son has it now...I still stand on the fact that I wont medicate him. When he is an adult he can decide if that is an option that he wants to take. It wasnt my intention to fear monger, but pushing pills like they are the answer to everything isnt it either. The truth is there is only limited data on the long-term effects of psychotropic intervention in childhood by independent scientists.

If there were a more precise way to diagnose what's going on, I would say go for it. It would be like putting a cast on a broken bone. But putting a blind fold on and playing pin the tail on the donkey when it comes to these things just isnt my idea of a good time.

Does it work for some people, yes, does it work for all peopel, no, does it even work for most...I would say no again, simply because add diagnosis is not biological. So while kids who are tired, havent had a decent breakfast, have high levels of stress..etc are labeled with adhd, kids who happen to interrupt the teacher repeatedly and cant remember where they put their homework no matter how hard they try, even after slaving over it for hours...those kids get looked over as trouble makers...There needs to be more concrete methods of diagnosis.

4rch0n4n6313
08-11-15, 01:20 AM
A) I am relating a possible scenario as a result of improper psychotropic therapy, one that has happened to me...What do I know though, maybe if I was white things would have been different.

B) Growing up I had plenty of friends forced to take this medication or that, including Adderall, that absolutely HATED how it made them feel. The ones that liked it probably didnt end up in the treatment center with me, is what I am thinking...

C) Im glad you have had a good go of it, and it seems allot of parents do. That doesnt negate the fact that it will not be the appropriate thing for every child and parent with the diagnoses...the reasons I stated in the previous post are why.

D) I know what meth does to the neurotypical, because I have had friends that heavily abused the drug. Its scary. Its beyond scary. Being a consenting adult that is able to weigh the risks is one thing, but I couldn't put that on my kids knowing what I know about what it does to people who may have addictive behaviors. They say that the street grams of the drug correlates to the pure substance that some of us are prescribed, and the truth is, most of the weight from street drugs comes from filler. In other words, a person on meds is taking the equivalent of a person with a drug problem.

E) People have a right to advocate for caution just as much as they have a right to advocate for its use



If as you say there isnt alot of data on what happens to kids after a certain age then how can you support what it is that you are saying?


That my be true but the amount of adults who were or wish they were medicated I would bet outweighs those that feel it screwed them over. JMO.


Its stuff like this that makes me nuts. ANYONE who thinks that the purpose of medicating a child is to make them calmer, doesnt know what medication is for, and probably doesnt know jack about adhd, I suggest you read a sticky I wrote, it can better explain what I meant. And why do you think the alternative for calm is a child feeling like a zombie? Why do you think parents would rather have a zombie, or even having the term zombie used to describe their medicated kids?

Again, you are making assumptions. Medication doesnt take the place of behavior modifications or family values. It isnt always a matter of resources. There are many people that cant afford a doctor or have poor health insurance and all they can do is use the techniques you are referring to. And they need help.



You say both sides should be considered, but you already have a bias and misinformation that you base your view of medication on. Just because it happened to you doesnt mean its that way for most.


Of course risk assessment is necessary and with regards to the op maybe not necessary but the information you present as a back up for the fear mongering is your experience which is entirely subjective.

icarusinflames
08-11-15, 01:22 AM
The doctor who tested him saw him over two days and all the testing came back showing that he does NOT have ADHD. He performed above average on all the testing and showed excellent focus and attentoin skills. But he clearly has hyperactivity (but I knew that before the doctor even told me!). :)

Hi there! I heard from this ADHD expert named Russell Barkley that the attention tests result in false negatives (i.e. you do not have ADHD) when people who actually do have ADHD take them. Because we can hyper-focus in the artificial situation of taking a test and appear to have great concentration. But in our actual workplaces or environments, we don't do so well. If you want, I can send you a link. It may take me a little time to find it. It makes sense to me. The only really accurate way, and the way everyone diagnoses ADHD now, is by scales where you report behaviors. Also the teacher would fill out the scales, I think.

Am I getting this wrong or is this the proper way to diagnose?

icarusinflames
08-11-15, 01:39 AM
The doctor I took him to has a Ph.D. and ABPP degree. He's a psychologist and neuropsychologist.


First of all, I apologize for the length of this. If you are short on time, just read like the first 3 lines and you'll get what I was originally going to say. lol! It's amazing how I went on a memory tangent about education there.

~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Considering that ADHD is a neurological condition, (as in a medical problem), it's worth pursuing another evaluation, but this time by a psychiatrist at a reputable place. I know that is tricky because it depends on where you live, what is available. I myself chose to go to a University known for research and being advanced in general.

I was a little leery of a false diagnosis, and also a false negative where they say you don't have it. I have to travel 2 hours to get there, but I have family in the area. Now that I am diagnosed, I only have to visit every 3 months I think.

I've heard people say that psychologists can be more of hit or miss when it comes to diagnosing ADHD. I wonder if the difference is rooted in the fact that they do not prescribe medications and may be more prone to go against an ADHD diagnosis, which can help prevent false diagnosises, I suppose, but it would also result in false negatives. I think! A psychiatrist may not be the first choice of some people because they are known to prescribe drugs and many parents don't want to have their kids on amphetamine. It's totally possible to get the diagnosis done accurately by a skilled psychiatrist, and then refuse the drugs and pursue the various other ways to help the child. Getting the diagnosis is helpful to you as a parent because it means your child has been diagnosed with something considered a type of disability and you fall under the rights of people who have a disability. You can demand and get (I think!) more resources at school. This could be limited based on what the public schools in your area are able to provide anyhow though. But you should be able to get the accommodations.

Leveling the playing field a bit that way can help the kid learn as much as possible while still young.

I never got any help in school at all with my undiagnosed ADHD! I stopped being able to focus in school by the beginning of grade 7, so I stopped gaining my basic skills at that young age! But I was so advanced in reading and writing by then, I was testing on the level of college age by grade 9 (when I had already failed like 2 years of school!)

This enabled me to go on an succeed in college, with an acceptance into a college that is very difficult to get accepted into. I am so grateful that I was able to function in school up to grade 7 because it was a private school with small classes. But this came at great cost because my social ostracization is what allowed me to focus and still learn in the earliest grades.

without having any help at all from the public schools to figure out what my problem was, I drifted through years of public school without learning much at all. The choas of a public school can not be underestimated. I hated it with a passion. When I was in a private school (age 8 to 11), I remember reading Jane Eyre and Pride and Prejudice at home at night. The books were not assigned. They were just the few books my mom had given me in the house.

I remember wondering why everyone seemed to allow me to sit around and rot, when I was intellectually curious and increasingly looking for something to fill the void.

I was diagnosed at age 44 only after I was reading online and realized that I match up with ADHD way more than with traditional depression type of situation. SO I was diagnosed after experiencing such disappointments of life: Earning the B.A. degree and realizing that I was nearly 40,000 in debt and totally unwilling or unable to work ( a mixture of anxiety & lack of functionality). Also, I had been married for nearly 15 years and endured almost constant marital discord over all my problems (unable to keep the house organized and clean was the main issue). I would recommend pursuing the help for the child when they are young, rather than risk the life of a person undiagnosed and suffering from a neurological disorder

sarahsweets
08-11-15, 02:48 AM
, but pushing pills like they are the answer to everything isnt it either. The truth is there is only limited data on the long-term effects of psychotropic intervention in childhood by independent scientists.
Nobody is pushing pills, I was just trying to make a statement that did more than scare people away from meds. You keep saying there isnt enough evidence on the long term effects of medication whether by independent scientists or others- so how can you make the claim that it should be a last resort, and something a child should decide for themselves when they get older? What there is a lot of is evidence to support what medication can do for kids impaired by adhd, what kind of success they can have and their safety. Did you know that a significant % of the adhd population will end up having substance abuse issues due to the need for self medication? Did you know that early intervention which includes medication can reduce or eliminate that risk? Do you know that treating addicts in recovery for their adhd with stimulants can actually encourage sobriety because there is no self medicating treatment going on?

If there were a more precise way to diagnose what's going on, I would say go for it. It would be like putting a cast on a broken bone. But putting a blind fold on and playing pin the tail on the donkey when it comes to these things just isnt my idea of a good time.
If you are looking for precise diagnostic tools in order to receive medication then none of us would be treated.

does it even work for most...I would say no again, simply because add diagnosis is not biological.
I would disagree. I say it most likely works for most and I believe there is a biological component to adhd. If you say it isnt biological, then what is it?

So while kids who are tired, havent had a decent breakfast, have high levels of stress..etc are labeled with adhd,
In particular, girls are misdiagnosed or undiagnosed due to the bias that adhd is for hyper little boys. kids who happen to interrupt the teacher repeatedly and cant remember where they put their homework no matter how hard they try, even after slaving over it for hours...those kids get looked over as trouble makers..
This is exactly my point-imagine what proper treatment could do for kids like this?

sarahsweets
08-11-15, 02:56 AM
A) do I know though, maybe if I was white things would have been different.
I agree with you here. The lack of proper medical care and diagnosis to the minority population is unbelievable.

B) Growing up I had plenty of friends forced to take this medication or that, including Adderall, that absolutely HATED how it made them feel. The ones that liked it probably didnt end up in the treatment center with me, is what I am thinking...
What kind of a treatment center and what for?


D) I know what meth does to the neurotypical, because I have had friends that heavily abused the drug. Its scary. Its beyond scary. Being a consenting adult that is able to weigh the risks is one thing, but I couldn't put that on my kids knowing what I know about what it does to people who may have addictive behaviors. They say that the street grams of the drug correlates to the pure substance that some of us are prescribed, and the truth is, most of the weight from street drugs comes from filler. In other words, a person on meds is taking the equivalent of a person with a drug problem. this is where I get all ruffled. Prescribed stimulants ARE NOT LIKE METH. Street meth is dirty, made in someone's trailer, full of dangerous household chemicals and ingested by snorting,smoking or shooting. Even Desoxyn which is technically generically callerd methamphetamine is nothing like what you are talking about. NO ONE is prescribed a dose of stimulants that is anything like the meth you would buy on the corner and they only way that may be a thing is if the person abuses it.

E) People have a right to advocate for caution just as much as they have a right to advocate for its use
Totally agree, I just like to differentiate between antecdotal experience and actual facts.