Wanted: Area adults with ADHD symptoms

UO psychologist Ed AwhEUGENE, Ore. -- (April 21, 2009) -- Area adults ages 18-35 who suspect they have attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, or who already have been diagnosed, may be able to participate in a University of Oregon-led study.

The new project, funded by the National Institute of Mental Health, is designed to help researchers develop an accurate, objective-based measurement tool for identifying the presence and severity of ADHD symptoms in adults. The research is led by Ed Awh, a UO professor of psychology.

Adult ADHD often goes unrecognized or is misdiagnosed. The World Health Organization estimates that up to 5 percent of adults in North America and Europe may have ADHD. Awh notes that current tools for diagnosing ADHD are based primarily on subjective responses to symptom checklists, an approach that is prone to error and less useful for repeated measurements of symptom severity.

In preliminary studies, funded by the National Institutes of Health and the Oregon Medical Research Foundation, Awh's research team found that ADHD subjects may be highly susceptible to distraction by visual interference. The ongoing research project seeks to follow-up on these initial findings to examine the behavioral and neural basis of these effects.

Potential participants should have no history of neurological or learning disabilities, and be willing to withhold medication if already under treatment prior to experiments. Applicants must clear a phone interview and a full assessment to determine their eligibility to participate in the research. Participants will be reimbursed at $25 an hour, including the intake assessment.

Interested residents should contact the UO Psychology Clinic at 541-346-4954 or by email (uoadhd@gmail.com). Please provide your name, phone number and best time to be contacted.