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Can J Psychiatry. 1999 Dec;44(10):1025-35.

The treatment of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder: an annotated bibliography and critical appraisal of published systematic reviews and metaanalyses.

Author information

1
Department of Clinical Epidemiology & Biostatistics, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario. jadada@fhs.mcmaster.ca

Abstract

CONTEXT:

The Agency for Health Care Policy and Research charged the McMaster Evidence-based Practice Center with conducting a comprehensive systematic review of the literature on the treatment of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), with input from various groups of stakeholders. One strategy used to avoid duplication of work included a critical appraisal of existing systematic reviews and metaanalyses.

OBJECTIVE:

To identify and appraise published metaanalyses and systematic reviews on the treatment of ADHD and to produce an annotated bibliography.

DATA SOURCES:

Medline, Cumulative Index in Nursing and Allied Health (CINAHL), Healthstar, Psycinfo, and Embase were searched to September 1998; the Cochrane Database (1998 issue 3), selected Internet sites, and the files of investigators were also reviewed.

STUDY SELECTION:

Review articles described as systematic reviews or metaanalyses or including a Methods section were identified independently by 3 reviewers.

DATA EXTRACTION:

Two reviewers extracted, by consensus, relevant information on the name, methodological quality, ADHD-related aspects (comorbid disorders, family characteristics) of those reviews; data on the population, study setting, interventions, and outcomes evaluated by the reviews were also retrieved.

RESULTS:

Thirteen reviews, published from 1982 to 1998, were included. Eight included metaanalysis and 5 a qualitative review. Nonpharmacological treatments were mentioned in 6 reviews and combination therapies in 3. One review focused on the treatment of adults. Forty-seven drugs and 20 adverse effects were mentioned. Most reviews had major methodological flaws.

CONCLUSIONS:

Most published systematic reviews and metaanalyses on the treatment of ADHD have limited value for guiding clinical, policy, and research decisions. A rigorous, systematic review following established methodological criteria is warranted.

PMID:
10637682
DOI:
10.1177/070674379904401009
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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