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UC researchers enrolling patients to look at brain changes for ADHD study

UC researchers enrolling patients to look at brain changes for ADHD study (WKRC)

CINCINNATI (WKRC) - Local researchers are part of a breakthrough trial that is looking at Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder or “ADHD.”

They are looking for those already diagnosed, or even at risk for this condition to see if a something simple, might help improve some of its symptoms.

This study is now open to teens and young adults at the University of Cincinnati.

It's one of just a handful in the country, looking at not just future risks in those who have ADHD, but also if potentially something simple, might be one more way, to ease symptoms and put kids on a better path for life.

Meet Tyler Boes, who was diagnosed with ADHD. He's doing great now, but Tyler remembers as early as in the 2nd grade of school that:

“I couldn't really focus on what I was doing, it took a long time to get my homework done, I was easily agitated,” said Tyler.

Eventually, he was put on medication after a diagnosis of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder or ADHD.

Doctor Cal Adler said that a collection of symptoms of ADHD often include: “Difficulty focusing, difficulty bringing full mind on a task, agitation.”

Nobody is quite sure what causes ADHD, but Dr. Adler is now part of a breakthrough clinical trial that is looking at the brains of those aged 10-years-old and older who have ADHD, or may be at risk for it, due to family history.

What makes this unique however is they are looking at something that might make a difference in what you eat, perhaps before, during and after treatment.

And, believe it or not, it's seafood, or a type of fat found in it, called “Omega-3.”

“In this study, what we really want to do, is look at the intersection of Omega-3's and response to standard treatments for ADHD,” said Dr. Adler.

Dr. Adler’s team is trying to find out if the Omega-3's found in fish might work against some of the brain changes that may occur in those with ADHD.

“This really has the promise to have significant effect on how we view disorders like ADHD, and how we treat disorders like ADHD,” said Dr. Adler.

He says we already know that this nutrient plays an important role in brain health overall. Now his team is trying to find out if those such as Tyler might get additional benefit from it with or without ADHD medication.

“It's something that anyone can have access to, and yet potentially could have a real effect on young people and adults,” said Dr. Adler.

Tyler is just one of hundreds needed for this study to find out more and he says being part of the trail and getting the care he needs has already helped him in a lot of ways:

“My grades have gone from low B's to high A's, my family relationship is a lot more positive, I have a really good relationship with both my parents, and I am working on the relationship with my brother,” said Tyler.

This is a three-month study and the it's one of several going on at the University of Cincinnati,

For information about participating in the study, please contact Laura McLaughlin at laura.mclaughlin@uc.edu or call 513-558-6205.

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