Objective: To evaluate the efficacy and safety of memantine hydrochloride as an adjunct to stimulant pharmacotherapy for treating executive function deficits (EFDs) in adults with ADHD.
Method: This was a 12-week, double-blind, placebo-controlled, randomized clinical trial of memantine added to open-label treatment with stimulant medication. Because of the small sample size, we considered a standardized mean difference (equivalent to effect size) of ≥0.5 and odds ratios ≥2 as indicators of trend improvements.
Results: Twelve participants received memantine and 14 received a placebo. Trend improvements favoring memantine were observed on Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Functions-Adult Inhibition and Self-Monitor subscales when compared with Placebo. No significant changes were noted on the Cambridge Neuropsychological Test Automated Battery.
Conclusion: Among adults with ADHD and EFDs, adjunct treatment with memantine to osmotic release oral system-methylphenidate (OROS-MPH) was associated with improvements in selective areas of executive functioning, supporting the need for further research.
Keywords: ADHD; adult; adult ADHD treatment; executive function deficits; memantine.