Parental quality of life and depressive mood following methylphenidate treatment of children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder

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Abstract

Aim:

This naturalistic study investigated the associations between quality of life and depressive mood in parents and symptom changes in attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) children.

Methods:

At baseline and at weeks 4 and 8, the parents evaluated their children, who were receiving treatment with osmotic-release oral system methylphenidate (mean dosage 36.3 ± 15.5 mg/day), using the Swanson, Nolan, and Pelham – Fourth Edition (SNAP-IV-18) scale. The parents evaluated themselves using the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) and the World Health Organization Quality of Life Assessment, Brief Version (WHOQOL-BREF).

Results:

A significant reduction in SNAP-IV-18 scores and improvements in parental BDI scores and parental WHOQOL-BREF scores were observed. The decrease in BDI scores from baseline to 8 weeks was significantly associated with increases in WHOQOL-BREF sub-domain scores from baseline to 8 weeks, with a greater decrease at 4 weeks and after. The decrease in the SNAP-IV-18 hyperactivity–impulsivity score was significantly associated with increases in WHOQOL social sub-domain scores from baseline to 8 weeks. For those patients who showed a 25% or greater decrease in the SNAP-IV-18 total scores from baseline to 8 weeks, the decreases in the SNAP-IV-18 total score and in the inattention and hyperactivity–impulsivity scores were significantly associated with a decrease in BDI scores from baseline to 8 weeks.

Conclusion:

Methylphenidate treatment for ADHD was associated with both symptom alleviation in children with ADHD and improvement in parental depressive mood and quality of life, suggesting that the effects of treatment could go beyond symptom improvement in ADHD.

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