Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder in older adults: Prevalence and possible connections to mild cognitive impairment

Nikki Ivanchak, Kristen Fletcher, Gregory A. Jicha

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

39 Scopus citations


Attentional deficits are frequently seen in isolation as the presenting sign and symptom of neurodegenerative disease, manifest as mild cognitive impairment (MCI). Persistent ADHD in the geriatric population could well be misconstrued as MCI, leading to the incorrect assumption that such persons are succumbing to a neurodegenerative disease process. Alternatively, the molecular, neuroanatomic, or neurochemical abnormalities seen in ADHD may contribute to the development of de novo late life neurodegenerative disease. The present review examines the issue of causality vs confound regarding the association of ADHD with MCI, suggesting that both are tenable hypotheses.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)552-560
Number of pages9
JournalCurrent Psychiatry Reports
Issue number5
StatePublished - Oct 2012

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Acknowledgments This study was supported by funding from National Institutes of Health/National Institute on Aging 1 P30 AG028383, National Institutes of Health LRP 1L30 AG032934, and the Sanders-Brown Foundation.

Funding Information:
Disclosure N. Ivanchak: none; K. Fletcher: none; G. A. Jicha: consultant to Eli Lilly and Pfizer, and grants from National Institute on Aging and National Institutes of Health.


  • ADHD
  • Adult ADHD
  • Alzheimer's disease
  • Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder
  • DLB
  • Dementia with Lewy bodies
  • FTD
  • Frontotemporal dementia
  • Genetics
  • MCI
  • Mild cognitive impairment
  • Neuroimaging
  • Neurotransmitter systems
  • Older adults
  • Parkinson's disease
  • Pathogenesis
  • Treatment

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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