ADHD

Updated 04 July 2014

ADHD diagnosis device approved

The first medical device designed to help diagnose attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children and teens has been approved.

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The first medical device designed to help medical professionals diagnose attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children and teens has been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration.

The Neuropsychiatric EEG-Based Assessment Aid (NEBA) records and analyzes electric impulses produced by the brain's nerve cells, the agency said in a news release. The non-invasive device, which takes about 20 minutes to produce complete results, measures brain wave frequencies called theta and beta waves. The theta/beta ratio has been shown to be higher in young people with ADHD, the FDA said.

Citing the American Psychiatric Association, the FDA said about 9 percent of US adolescents have ADHD, and the average age of diagnosis is 7 years. Children with ADHD typically have behaviour problems, trouble paying attention and hyperactivity.

Device maker NEBA Health submitted data from a clinical study of 275 children and adolescents, ranging in age from 6 to 17. The study found that the new device helped professionals better diagnose children with ADHD when combined with a psychological assessment, compared to a psychological assessment alone.

NEBA is based in Augusta, Georgia.

More information

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has more about ADHD.

 

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ADHD Expert

Dr Renata Schoeman has been in full-time private practice as a general psychiatrist (child, adolescent and adult psychiatry) since 2008, currently based in Oude Westhof (Bellville). Renata also holds appointments as senior lecturer in Leadership (USB) and as a virtual faculty member of USB Executive Development’s Neuroleadership programme. She serves on the advisory boards of various pharmaceutical companies, as a director of the Psychiatric Management Group (PsychMG) and is the co-convenor of the South African Society of Psychiatrist (SASOP) special interest group for adult ADHD, and co-founder of the Goldilocks and The Bear Foundation (www.gb4adhd.co.za) She is passionate about corporate mental health awareness and uses her neuroscience background to assist leaders in equipping them to become balanced, healthy and dynamic leaders that take their own and their team’s emotional, intellectual, social health and physical needs into account. Renata is academically active and enjoys research and collaborative work, has published in many peer-reviewed journals, and has presented at local and international congresses. She is regularly invited to present at conferences and to engage with the media. During her post-graduate studies, she trained at Harvard, Boston in neurocognition and neuroimaging. Her awards include, amongst others, the Young Minds in Psychiatry award from the American Psychiatric Association, the Discovery Foundation Fellowship award, a Thuthuka award from the NRF, and a MRC Fellowship. She also received the Top MBA student award and the Director’s award from USB for 2015. She was a finalist for the Businesswomen’s Association of South Africa’s Businesswoman of the Year Award for 2016, and received the Excellence in Media Work award from SASOP during 2016.

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