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Child Adolesc Psychiatr Clin N Am. 2008 Apr;17(2):385-404, x. doi: 10.1016/j.chc.2007.11.002.

Neuroimaging of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder: can new imaging findings be integrated in clinical practice?

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Department of Psychiatry, Harvard Medical School, 25 Shattuck Street, Boston, MA 02115, USA.


Recent advances in neuroimaging research have helped elucidate the neurobiology of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and the mechanisms by which medications used to treat ADHD exert their effects. The complex nature and array of imaging techniques, however, present challenges for the busy clinician in assessing possible clinical uses of brain imaging. Even though currently there are no accepted uses for imaging in diagnosing ADHD (other than ruling out identifiable medical or neurologic conditions that may mimic ADHD), this review introduces the main imaging techniques used to study ADHD, identifies relevant complexities facing psychiatric researchers in implementing neuroimaging techniques for clinical purposes, and provides benchmarks to help determine when imaging modalities have advanced to a point that they are deemed clinically useful.

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