A possible pathophysiologic substrate of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder

Academic Article


  • The attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is associated with defective attention and response inhibition and motor restlessness. Inattention, defective response inhibition, and impersistence are more commonly seen in adults with right than with left hemisphere dysfunction. In light of this fact because children with ADHD not only appear to demonstrate these symptoms but also neglect the left side and have decreased activation of their right neostriatum, we propose that these children have a right hemisphere dysfunction. In addition, because both inattention and defective response inhibition can be seen in children with ADHD and in patients and animals who have frontal lobe and striatal dysfunction, we propose that children with ADHD have dysfunction in a right-sided frontal-striatal system. Motor restlessness may reflect frontal lobe dysfunction due to impairment of the mesocortical dopamine system.
  • Authors

    Published In

    Author List

  • Heilman KM; Voeller KKS; Nadeau SE
  • Volume

  • 6
  • Issue

  • SUPPL.