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Treatment of Hyperactive Children With Monoamine Oxidase Inhibitors:  I. Clinical Efficacy

Alan Zametkin, MD; Judith L. Rapoport, MD; Dennis L. Murphy, MD; Markku Linnoila, MD, PhD; Deborah Ismond, MA
Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1985;42(10):962-966. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1985.01790330042005.
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• Fourteen boys (mean age, 9.2±1.5 years) with Attention Deficit Disorder (ADD) With Hyperactivity were treated with dextroamphetamine sulfate or a monoamine oxidase inhibitor (MAOI) (six received clorgyline, eight received tranylcypromine sulfate) for four weeks each in a double-blind, cross-over study that included a two-week placebo washout between active drug periods. The MAOIs had immediate, clinically significant benefit and were clinically indistinguishable from dextroamphetamine. Most children responded to both stimulant and MAOI. These findings of equivalent efficacy of MAOIs in ADD are in contrast to our previous studies with neurotransmitter system selective agents, which showed only weak effects, and suggest that multiple neurotransmitter alterations may be required for stimulant drug effects in ADD. The immediate response to MAOIs indicates a different mechanism from that mediating antidepressant effect. The MAOIs may be useful alternate treatments in selected cases of ADD.


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