Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder: diagnosis and management

National Institute for Health and Care Excellence


Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a group of behavioural symptoms that include hyperactivity, impulsivity, and inattention. Symptoms of ADHD are distributed throughout the population and vary in severity. A diagnosis of ADHD can be made if an individual’s symptoms are associated with at least a moderate degree of psychological, social and/or educational, or occupational impairment.

This updated Guidelines summary covers identification and referral, post-diagnostic advice for patients and carers, and the use of drugs for the treatment of ADHD.


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