Treatment of Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder with Medication in Children with Autism Spectrum Disorder With and Without Intellectual Disability: A DBPNet Study

J Autism Dev Disord. 2022 May 28. doi: 10.1007/s10803-022-05611-1. Online ahead of print.

Abstract

Children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) and intellectual disability (ID)/global delay (GD) frequently have symptoms of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). We describe the practice patterns of developmental behavioral pediatricians (DBPs) in the treatment of children with ASD and coexisting ADHD and compare medication classes for children with and without intellectual disability. In bivariate analyses, we compared demographic characteristics, co-occurring conditions, and medication classes for children with and without intellectual disability. Significantly more patients with ID/GD were prescribed α-agonists than patients without ID/GD, but the difference was no longer significant when controlling for age in logistic regression children with ID/GD had more comorbidities and were more likely to be prescribed more than on psychotropic medication. In conclusion, age rather than ID/GD was associated with medication choice.

Keywords: ADHD; Autism; Intellectual disability; Medication.