Anatomical and functional brain imaging in adult attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)--a neurological view

Eur Arch Psychiatry Clin Neurosci. 2006 Sep;256 Suppl 1:i32-41. doi: 10.1007/s00406-006-1005-3.

Abstract

In this review, we discuss current structural and functional imaging data on ADHD in a neurological and neuroanatomical framework. At present, the literature on adult ADHD is somewhat sparse, and so results from imaging have to therefore be considered mainly from the childhood or adolescence perspective. Most work has considered the impairment of executive functions (motor execution, inhibition, working memory), and as such a number of attention networks and their anatomical correlates are discussed in this review (e.g. the cerebello-(thalamo-)-striato-cortical network seems to play a pivotal role in ADHD pathology from childhood to adulthood). The core findings in ADHD imaging are alterations in the architecture and function of prefrontal cortex and cerebellum. The dorsal part of anterior cingulated cortex (dACC) is an important region for decision making, and executive control is impaired in adult ADHD. Finally, dysfunction of basal ganglia is a consistent finding in childhood and adulthood ADHD, reflecting dysregulation of fronto-striatal circuitry. The cerebellum, and its role in affect and cognition, is also persistently implicated in the pathology of ADHD.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity / diagnostic imaging
  • Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity / pathology*
  • Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity / physiopathology
  • Brain / diagnostic imaging
  • Brain / pathology*
  • Brain / physiopathology
  • Child
  • Humans
  • Magnetic Resonance Imaging
  • Positron-Emission Tomography
  • Tomography, Emission-Computed, Single-Photon