Comment: The need for knowledge
It is often the case that parents of children with a confirmed or suspected diagnosis of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) will volunteer, much to the embarrassment of their children, that the latter are ‘immature’. By that, they primarily mean a delayed socioemotional development that compromises interactions with their peers, resulting in them being avoided, bullied and/or excluded by their peer group. This is an early finding that peaks during middle childhood, when bullying incidents in schools are at their highest. The literature search by Kevitiyagala and Finlay sought to identify articles that found a correlation between ADHD, whether treated with medication or not, and delayed gonadal (pubertal) maturation, with the answer that no conclusive link has been demonstrated to date. Most studies looking at delayed puberty have found a constitutional component in about 50% of cases and there might be an association between ADHD (with or without hyperactivity) and delayed puberty among those with constitutional delay and functional hypogonadotropic hypogonadism, suggesting that future studies should look at the underlying mechanisms of ADHD and the factors that control the onset of puberty.
ADHD in practice 2013; 5(3): 3–3
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