GROENMAN, A. P., Oosterlaan, J., Rommelse, N. N. J., Franke, B., Greven, C., Roeyers, H., Oades, R. D., Sergeant, J. A., Buitelaar, J. K., & Faraone, S. V.,

Stimulant Treatment Lowers the Risk of Developing Substance Use Disorder but not Nicotine Dependence in Adolescents with ADHD. British Journal of Psychiatry, 203, 112-119. [Request a copy] .....View Article


Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is linked to increased risk for substance use disorder (SUD) and nicotine dependence.

We examined the effects of stimulant treatment on subsequent risk for SUD and nicotine dependence in a large ADHD case-control sample.


ADHD, Conduct Disorder (CD) and Oppositional Defiance Disorder (ODD) were assessed at baseline.

SUD, nicotine dependence and stimulant treatment were assessed after a mean follow-up of 4.4 years, at a mean age of 16.4 years.

1 - Stimulant treatment of ADHD was linked to reduced risk for SUD compared to no stimulant treatment, -- after controlling for CD and ODD (HR = 2.12; 95% CI = 1.22 - 3.69).

2 - The stimulant and no stimulant treatment groups did not differ in risk for nicotine dependence (HR = 1.11; 95% CI = 0.43 - 2.89).

3 - Within the stimulant treatment group, earlier age of first stimulant use had protective effects on the development of SUD that decreased with age.


Stimulant treatment appears to lower the risk for developing SUD but not nicotine dependence in adolescents with ADHD