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FDA Questions Heart Risk Findings on ADHD Drugs

June 16, 2009

A study that found possible heart risks for healthy children who took attention deficit drugs had limitations and should not prompt parents to stop giving the medications, health officials said Monday. The study, published Monday in the American Journal of Psychiatry, found use of stimulant medications that treat attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) may be associated with rare cases of sudden death in children." Because of the study's limitations, parents should not stop a child's stimulant medication based on the study," the Food and Drug Administration, which partly funded the research, said in a statement….Madelyn Gould, the study's lead author, said the researchers generally agreed with the FDA's statements and "didn't want our findings to result in a change of parents' or physicians' attitudes about taking stimulant medications."…."We know the efficacy of stimulant medications far outweigh the risks," said Gould, a professor of psychiatry and epidemiology at Columbia [University]. Gould said the researchers noted the limitations in the study but felt the findings were "rigorous" and that doctors and other researchers should be aware of them….

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