This guideline covers recognising, diagnosing and managing attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children, young people and adults. It aims to improve recognition and diagnosis, as well as the quality of care and support for people with ADHD.
In September 2019, we amended the recommendation on assessment for people starting medication for ADHD to indicate that an ECG is not needed before starting stimulants, atomoxetine or guanfacine if cardiovascular history and examination are normal and the person is not on medicine that poses an increased cardiovascular risk. For details, see update information.
This guideline includes new and updated recommendations on:
- information and support
- managing ADHD
- medication, including monitoring and review
- adherence to treatment
It also includes recommendations on:
Who is it for?
- Healthcare professionals
- Commissioners and providers
- People with ADHD, and their families and carers
Is this guideline up to date?
December 2021: We have found no new evidence that affects the recommendations. For more information, see the surveillance decision.
Guideline development process
This guideline updates and replaces NICE guideline CG72 (September 2008), NICE technology appraisal guidance 98 (2006) and NICE evidence summaries ESUOM8, ESNM19 and ESNM70.
The recommendations in this guideline represent the view of NICE, arrived at after careful consideration of the evidence available. When exercising their judgement, professionals and practitioners are expected to take this guideline fully into account, alongside the individual needs, preferences and values of their patients or the people using their service. It is not mandatory to apply the recommendations, and the guideline does not override the responsibility to make decisions appropriate to the circumstances of the individual, in consultation with them and their families and carers or guardian.
All problems (adverse events) related to a medicine or medical device used for treatment or in a procedure should be reported to the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency using the Yellow Card Scheme.
Local commissioners and providers of healthcare have a responsibility to enable the guideline to be applied when individual professionals and people using services wish to use it. They should do so in the context of local and national priorities for funding and developing services, and in light of their duties to have due regard to the need to eliminate unlawful discrimination, to advance equality of opportunity and to reduce health inequalities. Nothing in this guideline should be interpreted in a way that would be inconsistent with complying with those duties.
Commissioners and providers have a responsibility to promote an environmentally sustainable health and care system and should assess and reduce the environmental impact of implementing NICE recommendations wherever possible.