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Kids in low-income families at ADHD risk

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ROCHESTER, Minn., Sep 14, 2004 (United Press International via COMTEX) -- U.S. researchers said children born to parents who have low education levels are at an increased risk for developing attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder.

Mayo Clinic researchers said boys from low-education families are particularly at risk for ADHD, compared to girls and all children born to parents with high levels of education.

The researchers studied 5,701 children in Olmsted County, Minn., and defined low levels of education as 12 years or less, and high levels were defined as 15 or more years.

They said the findings could help physicians and school officials better identify children who might be at risk of having ADHD and provide them with help at an earlier age.

ADHD is defined as a "persistent pattern of inattention and/or hyperactivity-impulsivity that is more frequent and severe than is typically observed in individuals at a comparable level of development."

Previous Mayo Clinic research found about 7.5 percent of children and adolescents are diagnosed with ADHD by age 19.

Copyright 2004 by United Press International.

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