The aim of the study was to obtain numbers of adult patients with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) on consultant adult and adolescent psychiatrists' case-loads. A brief semi-structured confidential postal questionnaire was sent to 1947 consultant psychiatrists in England and Wales.
There were 1030 consultants who responded (52.9%), which clearly indicates that there is an increasing demand and need for a service, and the resources, to treat adult ADHD. Only 197 consultants offered a service for adults with ADHD. Adult ADHD is more commonly diagnosed in males (n=995, 73%), and the total number of patients with a diagnosis of adult ADHD was 1345. Most patients were aged 18–25 years (n=209, 54%). The most commonly prescribed stimulant medication was methylphenidate (n=251, 55%).
There is a clear need to improve services and funding for adults with ADHD. The study shows there are already services available for adult ADHD patients in some areas of the country. However, more research is needed to establish the prevalence of adult ADHD in England and Wales.
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