Pain Relievers and ADHD
"Acetaminophen Use During Pregnancy, Behavioral Problems, and Hyperkinetic Disorders"
New research has found that children of women who took pain relievers containing acetaminophen during pregnancy were at a higher risk of developing attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder or hyperkinetic disorder, which is similar to ADHD but characterized by more severe impairments.
The results were released last week in the online edition of JAMA Pediatrics, a publication of the American Medical Association.
The study of more than 64,000 Danish children found that those whose mothers used acetaminophen, found in common over-the-counter medications such as Tylenol or Excedrin, were 37 percent more likely to have a medical diagnosis of hyperkinetic disorder around age 5. They were also 13 percent more likely to be exhibiting ADHD-like symptoms by age 7, and 29 percent more likely to be taking ADHD medications.
Even so, the risk of a child having ADHD-like symptoms by age 7 was relatively small for all children. The study found that 2.5 percent of children had such symptoms if their mothers never reported taking the drug; the rate went up to 3.4 percent if their mothers reported taking it at least once during pregnancy.
Vol. 33, Issue 23, Page 5Published in Print: March 5, 2014, as Pain Relievers and ADHD