Saturday, February 26, 2005

ADHD in the UK

From The Spectator today:
In official circles, including the Department of Health, the existence of ADHD as a physical medical condition is now accepted as a fact. ‘No evidence exists to suggest that ADHD is caused by anything other than neurobiological malfunctioning,’ claims Dr Nikos Myttas, consultant child psychiatrist at the Finchley Memorial hospital. Yet a glance at the symptoms for ADHD as listed in the latest edition of the Diagnostic Systems Manual — the psychiatrists’ bible for analysing disorders — points to an almost laughable vagueness. Most of these symptoms could apply to almost any child who is not a swot or teacher’s pet. So the ADHD sufferer is said to ‘dislike or avoid tasks that involve sustained mental effort such as homework’. He also ‘doesn’t appear to listen when told something’, can be ‘forgetful’, has ‘trouble waiting his turn’, makes ‘careless errors in schoolwork’, ‘talks excessively’, ‘loses materials needed for activities’ and ‘inappropriately runs or climbs’.

What the Diagnostic Manual appears to be describing is the average British school pupil....

Yet in the name of the so-called disease, tens of thousands of children are now being given heavy doses of government-sanctioned drugs which could cause lasting damage to their brains.

Full article is here.

Hat tip: Ralph Raico


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