Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Anti-Convulsant Treatment Benefits Disruptive, Explosive Youth

Date:
April 24, 2000
Source:
American Psychiatric Association
Summary:
Children and adolescents with certain severe disruptive behavior disorders that are marked by explosive temper caused by irritable mood swings demonstrated significant behavior improvement when treated with the anti-convulsant divalproex (Depakote), according to a preliminary study briefly reported in the May issue of the American Journal of Psychiatry.

Children and adolescents with certain severe disruptive behavior disorders that are marked by explosive temper caused by irritable mood swings demonstrated significant behavior improvement when treated with the anti-convulsant divalproex (Depakote), according to a preliminary study briefly reported in the May issue of the American Journal of Psychiatry.

In the joint New York State Psychiatric Institute, Columbia University study of twenty outpatients ages 10 to 18 who met specific criteria for explosive temper and mood variations, researchers found that 80% or more of those receiving the medication responded positively and with improved behavior and responses. "These are kids who cannot control their behavior, who get placed in special education classes from an early age, who don't get exposed to normal kids their own age, and who are deprived of normal socialization experiences," said lead researcher Stephen J. Donovan, M.D.

"Since children and adolescents with disruptive disorders are at high risk for delinquency and addiction, identifying a subgroup that can be helped with medications as part of their comprehensive psychosocial treatment, could have major public health implications," Dr. Donovan added. "Explosive behavior among a small number of children and youth is a significant problem in our schools and communities and deserves further research. This study suggests that a particular type of disruptive behavior -- characterized by explosive temper driven by irritable mood -- may have a biological component that responds positively to anti-convulsant medications." Dr. Donovan said the double-blind placebo-controlled crossover study did not evaluate use of the medication in other forms of disruptive behavior, and did not examine the long term consequences of its use.

Herbert Sacks, M.D., noted Yale child and adolescent psychiatrist and a past President of the APA, cautioned that the study, while promising, is preliminary. He noted that identifying disruptive children who met criteria used in the divalproex study "requires a comprehensive evaluation by an experienced child and adolescent psychiatrist with appropriate consideration of the dynamics within the family and important input from the school and pediatrician. In treating disruptive disorders and other disorders of children, medication must never be used alone, but as part of a treatment plan that involves psychosocial interventions including psychotherapy."

Dr. Sacks warned that "the rash use of an off-label medication could possibly lead us into situations where educators and distraught parents pressure psychiatrists and other physicians to prescribe medication without a full diagnostic evaluation, without monitoring, and without adequate scientific evidence of safety and effectiveness."

###

NOTE: The American Psychiatric Association publication "Fact Sheet: Children, Mental Health and Medicines," is available on-line at http://www.psych.org/public_infor. The American Psychiatric Association is a national medical specialty society that represents nearly 40,000 psychiatric physicians specializing in the diagnosis, treatment and prevention of mental illnesses and substance use disorders.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Psychiatric Association. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

American Psychiatric Association. "Anti-Convulsant Treatment Benefits Disruptive, Explosive Youth." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 24 April 2000. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/04/000424091206.htm>.
American Psychiatric Association. (2000, April 24). Anti-Convulsant Treatment Benefits Disruptive, Explosive Youth. ScienceDaily. Retrieved October 1, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/04/000424091206.htm
American Psychiatric Association. "Anti-Convulsant Treatment Benefits Disruptive, Explosive Youth." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2000/04/000424091206.htm (accessed October 1, 2014).

Share This



More Mind & Brain News

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Pregnancy Spacing Could Have Big Impact On Autism Risks

Pregnancy Spacing Could Have Big Impact On Autism Risks

Newsy (Oct. 1, 2014) A new study says children born less than one year and more than five years after a sibling can have an increased risk for autism. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Stopping School Violence

Stopping School Violence

Ivanhoe (Oct. 1, 2014) A trauma doctor steps out of the hospital and into the classroom to teach kids how to calmly solve conflicts, avoiding a trip to the ER. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Pineal Cysts: Debilitating Pain

Pineal Cysts: Debilitating Pain

Ivanhoe (Oct. 1, 2014) A tiny cyst in the brain that can cause debilitating symptoms like chronic headaches and insomnia, and the doctor who performs the delicate surgery to remove them. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com
Burning Away Brain Tumors

Burning Away Brain Tumors

Ivanhoe (Oct. 1, 2014) Doctors are 'cooking' brain tumors. Hear how this new laser-heat procedure cuts down on recovery time. Video provided by Ivanhoe
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins