Height, weight, IGF-I, IGFBP-3 and thyroid functions in prepubertal children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder: effect of methylphenidate treatment

Horm Res. 2005;63(4):159-64. doi: 10.1159/000084683. Epub 2005 Mar 24.


Objective: To investigate if there are any disease-related or methylphenidate-induced aberrations in growth parameters, growth hormone insulin-like growth factor (IGF)-I, IGFBP-3 axis and the thyroid function tests in children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

Methods: Newly diagnosed and untreated prepubertal children with ADHD were longitudinally followed before and approximately every 4 months after methylphenidate treatment for up to 16 months. Height SDS, weight SDS, BMI SDS, serum GH, IGF-I, IGFBP-3, T4, free T4, T3, and TSH were measured at each visit.

Results: All of the examined parameters were within normal limits for age before treatment. Methylphenidate treatment did not significantly affect SDS of height, weight, BMI, IGF-I and IGFBP-3 in the long run. Serum T4 and free T4 levels showed modest reductions within normal limits in a time-dependent manner.

Conclusions: Prepubertal children with ADHD had normal height, weight, BMI, serum IGF-I and IGFBP-3 and thyroid functions. Methylphenidate treatment had no sustained effects on growth parameters, IGF-I and IGFBP-3 during the follow-up period of this study. However, it caused a mild decrease in total and free T4 which may warrant further monitoring.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity / blood
  • Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity / drug therapy*
  • Body Height / drug effects
  • Body Weight / drug effects
  • Case-Control Studies
  • Central Nervous System Stimulants / administration & dosage*
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Infant, Newborn
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor Binding Protein 3 / blood*
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor I / analysis*
  • Methylphenidate / administration & dosage*
  • Thyroid Gland / metabolism*
  • Thyroid Hormones / blood


  • Central Nervous System Stimulants
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor Binding Protein 3
  • Thyroid Hormones
  • Methylphenidate
  • Insulin-Like Growth Factor I