4-10% (est.) of all school
age children are diagnosed with ADHD.
Methylphenidate (Ritalin) and
amphetamine (Adderall) are central nervous system stimulants used to treat
70% of ADHD-diagnosed
children respond to psycho-stimulant drugs (e.g. Ritalin). 15% improve when given anti-depressant drugs.
Some children do not respond to any of these drug therapies
8.5 tons of methylphenidate
are produced each year globally.
90% of the world’s Ritalin is
used in the United States.
9.9 million Ritalin
prescriptions were written in the United States in 1999 alone.
In November 1999, the U.S.
Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) warned about a record six-fold
increase in Ritalin production between 1990 and 1995.
A recent article in the Journal of the American
Medical Association reports
a three-fold increase in the prescription of stimulants to toddlers.
Nearly 50 % of doctors
confess to spending an hour or less with a child before making an ADHD
diagnosis and prescribing medication.
A National Institute of Health Consensus Development
Conference (1998) and the American Academy of Pediatrics (2000) report found that there is no known biological basis for ADHD.