11 Psychologists and Members of the American Psychological Association take a stand and fire back against deceptive statements regarding ADHD being marketed to the public.  




“They concluded that the brains of ADHD subjects were 10% smaller than those of normals, and claimed this as proof that ADHD is a brain disease.  What Swanson failed to acknowledge was the fact that virtually all of the ADHD subjects had been on long-term Ritalin treatment, and that this….was the likely cause of brain smallness. Swanson did acknowledge this fact, immediately thereafter, when I made the point from the audience.  Castellanos acknowledged, in an interview published in the January 2000, Reader’s Digest that ‘Incontrovertible evidence (that ADHD is a disease) is still lacking,” and also that “these smaller areas of the brain could be the result of stimulant treatment.”


Dr. Fred Baughman

Pediatric Neurologist

In response to the review of brain scans by a Dr. Swanson and Dr. Xavier Castellanos of the National Institute of Mental Health







Dispel the Myths. There are several myths about ADHD that have become quite popular, but still to this day remain unproven.  Sadly, we continue to hear that parents are being told these same myths over and over again.  Simply put, these myths are misinformation.  Misinformation can cause confusion and frustration, and if heard enough times can cause a person to make the wrong choices.  


Have you been told:


1.    That there is an actual test to detect if your child has ADD/ADHD?


Answer:  There is NO test in existence to determine the diagnosis of ADHD.  There is NO objective test (blood, urine, bodily fluids, bile, or brain) that a doctor can use as an indicator of ADD/ADHD.    


How we know this:  In 1998 The National Institute of Health held a Conference on ADHD.  At the end of this conference they issued this statement:  “….We do not have an independent, valid test for ADHD, and there are no data to indicate that ADHD is due to a brain malfunction.”


2.   Brain/Pet Scans as tests?  

Have you been told that there is a brain/pet scan that can determine that you child has ADHD, but that this scan is so expensive that it is not affordable by the majority of people, and that insurance companies do not pay for it? 


Answer:  There is NO exact Brain/Pet scan that determines conclusively that a child has this disorder.


How we know this:  On November 16-18, 1998, at the National Institute of Health Consensus Conference on ADHD, it was revealed that the on-average, 10% brain atrophy, seen in ADHD subjects, on MRI (structural) scans, was due, not to the never-validated disease, ADHD, but to the long-term methylphenidate/amphetamine “treatment” on all of the ADHD subjects.”


        3.   ADD/ADHD is like Cancer or Diabetes

Have you been told this and that you wouldn’t deprive a child of   chemotherapy or insulin, so why would you deprive them of stimulant “treatment”?


Answer:  No ADD/ADHD is not like either Cancer or Diabetes.


How we know this:  Getting back to what the definitions of objective and subjective truly are gets to the heart of this misrepresentation of facts.


Cancer and diabetes can be objectively seen and diagnosed.  There are objective tests to determine both true medical conditions.  Chemotherapy is given to eradicate the cancer, and physicians can clearly see if cancer is shrinking, growing, or inactive by objective tests.  Diabetes is diagnosed with an objective blood test and Insulin can be given and measured in blood to control diabetes. 


As we said before, ADD/ADHD cannot be objectively proven, via blood, brain, urine, bodily fluids, or bile.  There is no way of proving a child has this “mental illness”, “neuro-biological disorder”, “neurological disorder”, “disease”, “illness” or whatever else it has been denoted or coined by pro-drug, pro-label groups.


Simply put, you would not treat a child with chemotherapy if you were told that he/she has cancer, without objectively validating to verify the cancer within the child’s body.   


In the same token, why should you “treat” your child with a psycho-stimulant that the Drug Enforcement Administration, itself, classifies as a Schedule II drug in the same classification group as Cocaine, Amphetamine and Methamphetamine, without actually having proof in hand that your child suffers from this?  ADD/ADHD has been termed a “chemical imbalance”, “mental illness”, “neuro-biological condition”, “disease”, and an “illness.”  All of these terms used today and marketed to the public to describe the diagnosis/disorder known as ADHD are based in THEORY only. 


Dr. Mary Ann Block, owner of the Block Center and author of the book No More ADHD, couldn’t have said it any better when she stated:


“Let me clear this up right now. ADHD is not like diabetes and [the stimulant used for it] is not like insulin. Diabetes is a real medical condition that can be objectively diagnosed.  ADHD is an invented label with no objective, valid means of identification.  Insulin is a natural hormone produced by the body and it is essential for life.  [This stimulant] is a chemically derived amphetamine-like drug that is not necessary for life.  Diabetes is an insulin deficiency.  Attention and behavioral problems are not a [stimulant] deficiency.”


4.   Have you been told that if “medication” for ADD/ADHD works on   your child and you see improvements in your child’s behavior or attention this indicates that your child really has ADD/ADHD? 


Answer:  This is just more misinformation that continues to be spread throughout the public.  This is not a true statement.


How we know this:  It is clearly stated in the US Department of Justice Drug Enforcement Administration Report on Methylphenidate (Ritalin) p.11: “However contrary to popular belief, stimulants like methylphenidate will affect normal children and adults in the same manner that they affect ADHD children.* Behavioral or attentional improvements with methylphenidate treatment therefore is not diagnostic of ADHD.”


*(Rapoport et al., 1978; Gittelmana and Kannar, 1998)


Simplified:  This means that any stimulant like Ritalin will affect children said to have (diagnosed) ADHD the same way that it affects children that are not said to have ADHD.  If Ritalin or any other similar stimulant seems to improve your child’s behavior or attention this does NOT mean that your child has ADD/ADHD.



We are here to set the record straight and dispel these myths.  We are putting you on the alert.  If you hear these many myths it should raise a red flag in your mind.  Stay calm, cool, and collect and carefully think of good questions and responses to give to the person telling you this misinformation.  By questioning misinformation you are holding those persons responsible for spreading this misinformation. These individuals need to be held accountable for validating their statements!  If you have taken the time to read the information on this site, as well as www.ablechild.org we feel strongly that you can educate yourself enough on the issue to ask important questions and spot the many inconsistencies with the misinformation.  Our parent organization works hand in hand with many other groups, doctors, mental health providers, and educators that we have listed on our links page.  We highly recommend that you take the time and view these many sites that we have highly rate based on their accuracy and validation.  We feel confident that with all accurate information, you as parents will be better educated, armed with knowledge, and ultimately better prepared to advocate for your child’s health, education, and safety.




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