View Full Version : Book - Healing ADD - Daniel G. Amen, MD

08-29-05, 03:28 PM
Healing ADD - The Breakthrough Program That Allows You to See and Heal the 6 Types of ADD - Daniel G. Amen, MD

I got this book a couple of days ago from my SIL and in reading it, have been blown away by the incredibly accurate discription of our son. He's 24, was diagnosed with ADD in Gr.1, took ritalin for awhile, but didn't like it and refused to take it anymore. He dropped out of school after repeating Gr. 11, and has been abusing alcohol and drugs, has trouble finding and keeping a job, etc, etc.

What I found interesting is how this Dr. breaks down ADD into 6 catergories:

1) Classic ADD
2) Inattentive ADD
3) Overfocused ADD
4) Temporal Lobe ADD
5) Limbic ADD
6) "Ring of Fire" ADD

My son has Classic, Inattentive, and what surprised me, Temporal Lobe ADD which is caused, often, by brain injury. When he was just about 3, he was pushing some cardboard boxes off our deck, about 4 feet off the ground, and went off the deck with it, hitting the bridge of his nose on the cardboard, causing 2 black eyes. He didn't lose consciousness, that I know of, and we took him to the Dr. She was basically unconcerned at the time, but now, reading the symptoms of Temporal Lobe ADD, it seems that more damage was done than anyone thought. This type of ADD is treated with anti-convulsants.

Has anyone else read this book, or using this type of medication for their ADD?


08-29-05, 05:13 PM
I've read parts of the book for a research paper I did in college, and found some of the info to be inaccurate (not necessarily the signs and symptoms (or description) of AD/HD) but other info. Unfortunately I can't remember the stuff that was a little off, but I can try to find my notes, and get back to you if you'd like...

By the way I personally take Adderall-XR.

Take care. :)

08-29-05, 05:28 PM
I've posted this many times before and will do so again as an FYI.

While respected as a prolific researcher, Dr.Amen's research has not been able to be replicated by researchers outside of his own students or those associated with him (I'm paraphrasing Russ Barkley from the Door County conference in 2003).

In other words, there has been no proof of longitudinal validity & reliability (does it measure what it says it does and can complete strangers come in and replicate the study and get the same results ) ?

Without those, there is no credibility to his findings.

The other issues that have created some controversy are : 1) No one other than himself or his trainees/ devotee's use his terms for the different kinds of ADHD; which is misleading and confusing;

... and 2) giving radioactive dye to human test subjects is considered to be "unethical" from the standpoint of violating one of the most basic scientific principles regarding not putting human subjects at potential risk of danger.

The fact that they urinate it out within 24 hrs does not make it "okay."

I've read one of his books and find the info interesting to say the least. As I said, he is respected for his tireless efforts, however, the manner in which he does it has caused a great many clinicians to view him as "off the wall," for lack of a better term.

Having said all that, I'm glad that you can take something away from the book as being helpful to you and your family.:)

Ultimately, he will go down in the history of ADHD as either a brilliant/cutting edge researcher or as an eccentric and totally "off the wall wingnut." :)

Only time will tell.

08-29-05, 10:12 PM
Thank you for your responses. I posted without looking for a thread on this book first and I should have, I guess, cause I found one. It's an informative discussion.


03-05-06, 01:41 PM
re: Crichie's post

The location of Temporal Lobe Brain tissue makes it very vulnerable to injury.

Not just from blows on the outside going inwards, but also from the inner surface of the Skull injuring the Brain.

Inside the skull's Lining are bony prominences (edges that stick out). Near the Temporal Lobe anteriorly, there are little "wings" of bone, called the Sphenoid (means "bat wing", IIRC). In some Brain injuries, the Brain spins around inside the skull, and this Sphenoid Bone catches on the Brain tissue and injures it.

Also, when Brain's get hurt and Swell, the Skull does not open up to accomodate the Brain's dramatic increase in size. The Skull can do immense injury to the Brain via pressure -- like a tight corset.

These can be devastating injuries.

[NB. Remember too, that 80% of Concussions/Brain damage do not cause a "knockout". So very damaging Brain injuries can get missed.]



There is a kid (10 or 12) in my neighbourhood who has awful awful CD/ODD/ADHD/Tourettes + an antisocial family -- everything. (As well, this basically illiterate family has ongoing Child Protection issues. *gurgle*)

Anyway -- I recommended that b/c of his 'behaviour problems' that his Grandparents [guardians] get him assessed by neurologist or psychologists or psychiatrists, ASAP.

It would be an act of Problem Prevention, really.

If they get a letter that they can send to the Police -- when the kid starts really hitting puberty and acting up, the Police will have it in his file that he has several brain-based disorders.

And because Temporal Lobe injured people get "moody" and negative thoughts, suspicious, and an aggressive-behaving "hot Brains", they are easily caught up in the criminal justice system.

Imagine going to jail for an 'undocumented' Brain-based neurological injury -- how tragic !!

Anti-convulsants can help with calming down Temporal Lobe syndromes, as Dr. Amen writes in his books.

I'd rather be labelled as "forensic or mentally disordered" than "criminal" anyday.

He'd get treated better, when he gets into a legal mess -- which with this kids' impulsivity, is sure to happen.

Also -- taking medication is important. It helps prevent drug abuse. [Cannot recall where that study came out of.]

03-05-06, 02:08 PM
I understand the controvery surround Dr. Amen and his brain imaging work, but I find his break down of the different types of ADD useful (even though I would prefer he stick with recognized terms to avoid confusion -- IE: the overfocused group I fall in probably is just generic ADD with a bit of OCD added) in that he gives specific suggestions for medication, diet and supplement possibilities that work well with each group. All ADD is not the same and identifying more specific groups for treatment is helpful. I had improved a great deal on my ADD meds but was still having trouble with getting out of hyperfocus mode -- I tried a supplement he recommended and it made all the difference for me. So I'm kind of fond of the guy, but wouldn't go get my brain or my kid's scanned unless I suspected physical trauma had occured.

I'm glad you found it helpful -- just being able to recognize yourself or someone you love in the description can be extremely validating and can help set you on a more hopeful path.

Take care,

03-19-06, 08:03 PM
People get radioactive material injected into their bodies everyday. It is called "nuclear medicine", I worked in the radiology department of a hospital, where again, people are exposed to radioactive material, I also had a scan of my gallbladder using nuclear medicine to determine its ejection fraction (the rate at which your gallbladder functions). Mine was 58, they don't usually removed your gallbladder until that number is 30 or below. If your number is negative, your gallbladder is pumping in the wrong direction and you will need to have it removed immediately.

06-01-06, 09:00 PM
Psychiatry is the only medical field I know of that a diagnosis is done by guessing. I have had two children with problems that forced me to deal with that world. One was born different and the other was a victim of trauma when she was in junior high. Both had very difficult cases that would get passed around when one of them ran out of guesses. It was always dealt with the same. Take the kids off their meds completely so they can see what they are like - never mind the hell they go through during that process. Come up with their own idea of the problem and send you on your way. If it doesn't work out then it is you that is doing something wrong. Psychiatrist have no problem bad mouthing other psychiatrists either. If you question their diagnosis then you are in denial. It doesn't matter what degree you might have or how good your questions can be. Point is, they never have to prove anything. They don't have to show you an x-ray or a blood test. Remember that of all the doctors out there - half of them graduated at the bottom half of their class.

I think it is necessary for studies to be replicated in order to be worth something but I think it is suspicious that psychiatrist would be so resistant to something that would shed some light on things.

How many times have people had reactions to medication that can't be explained? Or wont? When I was put on effexor I didn't know that you couldn't be late with a dose more than six hours or you would get sick. My daughter was on that and she had an adhd mother to remind her to take the stuff. No one told me that I would become deathly sick when I weaned off the stuff either. Or that another one would make me rage to the point that I wanted to slam myself against a wall. What if I had been one of those people that wanted to take it out on other people instead?