Objective Adolescents with ADHD are now leaving children’s services often with no support. There are no protocols or guidelines on management of this particular group. Objective of this study was to gather and disseminate information on management of adolescents with ADHD during transition to adults and feed this information into the planning process.
Methods Retrospective review of case notes of ADHD patients born during 1989 to 1992, who had been seen and discharged or in process of discharge in 4 year period between 2005 and 2008.
Results 16 cases were identified. Of these 14 (87%) were on medications. Medications prescribed were short-acting methylphenidate in 4 (28%); long-acting methylphenidate in 9 (64%), and omega 3 in 1 (7%). CAHMS were involved in 10/16 (62.5%). Of 16, 9 (57%) patients did not require any further referral. However, 7 (43%) of them needed medication into adulthood and were referred for follow-up at 16 years of age. Of 4/7 patients first referred to the general practitioners, 2 were felt to be inappropriate by them and 1 further was also felt to be inappropriate by mental health services (MHS). Of 3/7 patients first referred to MHS, 1 was followed up and 1 was felt to be inappropriate. There was no uniform referral policy and management plan for adolescents with ADHD.
Conclusion Our data show the impending need for transitional ADHD services to deal with this complex disorder. The data also highlight the need for planning process which should involve representatives of primary care, CAMHS, Community Paediatrician and Adult Mental Health.