OGDEN, Utah – A Weber State University psychology professor is looking for children to participate in a study evaluating the efficacy of stimulant medications in preschoolers with Attention Deficit Disorder/Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADD/ADHD).
Professor Bill McVaugh is a licensed psychologist whose research focuses on children. The purpose of his research is to determine the benefits of using stimulant medications for treating young children with ADD/ADHD. The study has been reviewed and approved by WSU's Institutional Research Board for Human Subjects, which works to protect research participants by maximizing anticipated benefits and minimizing possible risks of harm.
"The FDA has approved the use of these medications for children 6 years of age and older, but little research has been done on the effects of these drugs on children under 6," McVaugh said. Despite the lack of research, these drugs are commonly prescribed to preschool children. Assessing the impact these medications have on preschool children is very important, McVaugh said, because a preschooler's brain is in its most rapid and critical stage of development.
The four-week study is scheduled to begin January 8, 2004 and will be held at the Family Support Center (950 E. 12th St.) in Ogden. Participants in this study must be 5 years old or younger and currently taking a prescribed dosage of a stimulant medication for ADD/ADHD under the care of their physician. There is no cost for participating in the study.
"Our research will help parents better understand how these medications affect their child," said McVaugh. He said the study might also lead to new techniques in helping children with their disorder.
Parents or legal guardians interested in having their child take part in the study should contact McVaugh at 801-626-6660 or research assistant Cami Shorten at 801-589-6906.
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