Patients with ADHD May Share Medication

Many patients with ADHD report peers seeking nonmedical prescription stimulant use.

Researchers with Trinity College and Texas State University completed a study to determine not only why emerging adults (EAs) with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) choose to "share" prescription stimulants with peers, but also how, and to what effect, EAs with ADHD are approached.

The study of 149 EAs with ADHD determined several "predictors" to diversion of prescribed medications as well as several methods by which peers seeking prescription stimulants might request stimulants from EAs with ADHD. The researchers suggest that identifying how EAs with ADHD are approached for medication sharing, or diversion, may allow for the development of interventions designed to inoculate EAs with ADHD against peer requests.

Laura J. Holt, PhD, with Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut, served as lead author on the study centering on nonmedical prescription stimulant use (NMPSU). Holt and colleagues point out that although there have been a series of studies identifying predictors of which students might be more inclined to share or sell their prescription drugs to friends, classmates or acquaintances, few studies explore the dynamics of student-to-student interactions and how they relate to diversion.

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