Precision Medicine & Disorders of Attention

Joshua Hamilton, DNP, RN-BC, FNP-C, PMHNP-BC, CTMH, CNE, FAANP

As we find ourselves migrating back to the workplace, I am frequently hearing from parents, teachers and otherwise highly-functioning adults who are reporting difficulties with focus, concentration, motivation and task completion. As clinicians, we have longstanding familiarity with the implications of Attention Deficit-Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), including impaired academic functioning, especially for inattentive/combined types in school-aged children.

ADHD

What we are increasingly seeing are the effects of undiagnosed (or poorly treated) ADHD as patients age. These include, for example, decreased employment rates, lower job status, poor job performance, and increased risk for unintentional injury. At least one study also identified a risk for developing antisocial personality disorder when ADHD is not addressed in the younger adult population. There is also a new realization that geriatric ADHD is a “thing.” Perhaps there is no better time to direct renewed attention toward the promise of precision medicine to conceptualize and more effectively address the symptoms of ADHD?!

At the cornerstone of this idea is the science of pharmacogenomics, simply defined as the study of how genes affect a person’s response to drugs. In this sense, precision medicine combines pharmacology (the study of medication) and genomics (the study of genes and their functions) to help prescribers make more personalized medication choices. These include which medications to prescribe to different individuals and what doses will have the best effects.

Join me at a SBHPP conference in 2022 to explore updated diagnostic criteria and psychometric approaches to improve case identification, diagnosis & treatment of attention deficit-hyperactivity disorders. We’ll redefine this disorder in the context of epigenetics and neurobiology, and we’ll pay specific attention to contemporary pharmacological
approaches to manage the symptoms.

See Josh Hamilton speak at a 2022 Skin, Bones, Hearts & Private Parts CME Conference. Click here to find out where you can see him live and in-person!

Follow Josh Hamilton on Linkedin: https://www.linkedin.com/in/hamiltondnp/ 

References:

Klein RG et al. Clinical and functional outcome of childhood attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder 33 years later. Arch Gen Psychiatry 2012;69(12):1295-303.

Larson K et al. Patterns of Comorbidity, Functioning, and Service Use for US children with ADHD, 2007. Pediatrics 2011; 127(3):462-70.

Millichap JG. Etiological Classification of Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder. Pediatrics 2008;121(2): 358-65.

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