New treatment for Inattentive Attention Deficit Disorder (Inattentive ADD)

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Published: 20th December 2010
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For Inattentive Attention Deficit Disorder, (Inattentive ADD), the most prescribed treatment is stimulant drugs. Some patients with Inattentive ADD, however, cannot take stimulant drugs because they may have increased anxiety or have problems with depression when medicated with stimulants and for those patients Guanfacine is another medicine to pottentailly bring relief of inattentive symptoms.

Guanfacine is an Alpha2 receptor medicinethat has been prescribed, in addition to the stimulant ,medicines to treat Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and Inattentive ADD. Tenex (Guanfacine) is a blood pressure medicine that was coincidentally found to help people with ADHD and with Inattentive ADD. Tenex can be sedating and health care providers have also used this medicine to help with the insomnia and sleep problems experienced by some patients with a diagnosis of ADHD and Inattentive ADD. Though Guanfacine is often prescribed to improve an elevated blood pressure, the vast majority of people with ADD Inattentive and ADHD who are treated with this medicine do not get low blood pressure.

The science of these medications is brand new but some research scientist have come to understand that it is thought to be the alpha2 receptor medications, and not the stimulants, that better treat the symptoms of inattention seen in patients with Inattentive ADD. Pharmacist have come to believe that while the stimulants work to diminish inattention, they do not begin to treat the deep seeded problems at the Pre-frontal Cortex that are causing the problems experienced in Inattentive ADD.

Guanfacine acts on the Pre-frontal Cortex (PFC), the area of the brain that controls attention, impulsive behavior, hyperactivity, and working memory and by affecting the work of the alpha2 receptors in the PFC area of the brain, improves symptoms such as poor working memory, inattention and the other often experienced symptoms of ADD Inattentive and ADHD.

Alpha-2A adrenergic receptors also facilitate brain communications. These receptors are activated by Guanfacine and improve the connectivity of PFC networks and, in this way, facilitate working memory and diminish distractability.

Unlike the stimulants, Guanfacine brings on these benefits to the PFC even in the event of stress. Stress has been shown to temporarily disconnect the PFC networks which can make the symptoms of Inattentive ADD worse. Guanfacine is available in a 12 hour acting form that can be taken once a day. Who knows? Guanfacine may become the future standard of treatment for the symptoms of Inattentive ADD. Only the future will tell.

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