ADHD diagnosis drive to
start in Liverpool
NEW ways to diagnose attention deficit
hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) faster in children are being investigated in
Young people aged between 6 to 18 years, who have been referred for an assessment
of the condition, are being invited to help.
Principal Investigator Professor Chris Hollis, who is leading the project
looking at better ways to diagnose, said:- "ADHD affects up to five in 100
children and if left undiagnosed the child can sometimes become isolated because
no one understands their behaviour.
There has been rapid growth in diagnosis over the last 30 years with the number
of children recognised and treated for ADHD in the UK increasing almost 10 fold
from the early 1980's. Despite the increasing numbers, clinical methods for the
assessing and treating of ADHD have hardly changed, so we want to look at the
best way to identify the condition."
The study will investigate how effective the QbTest test is, which a computer
based assessment tool that examines whether an individual is showing symptoms of
A motion tracking system measures the amount of movement the user makes when
performing the task.
The project entitled:- 'Assessing QbTest Utility in ADHD' (AQUA Trial) has
been funded by the National Institute for Health Research's Collaboration for
Leadership in Applied Health Research and Care (NIHR CLAHRC).
It is also taking place in other areas around the country, including
Lincolnshire, Leicestershire and Nottinghamshire.
Professor Hollis is also a Consultant in Developmental Neuropsychiatry with
Nottinghamshire Healthcare NHS Trust and Professor of Child and Adolescent
Psychiatry at the University of Nottingham. "The other aims of the project
we are hoping to identify is to assess whether the QbTest will lead to earlier
treatment and improved patient outcomes. We will also be looking at the
financial implications the test may have on the NHS if introduced. Spending on
ADHD medication has increased seven fold between 1998 and 2005, so we want to
ensure the financial costs of the test are viable."
The QbTest test takes 15 to 20 minutes to complete and the participant must respond
as quickly and as accurately as possible to certain geometric shapes appearing
on a computer screen by pressing a responder button.
As they perform the task, a camera located above the computer records movement
from a reflector located on the person's forehead.
When the test is finished, a report is delivered which takes into account the
person's age, gender and performance.
NIHR CLAHRC East Midlands is a partnership of regional health services,
universities and industry which turns research into cost saving and high quality
care through cutting edge innovation.