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Logo of bmcpsycBioMed Centralsearchsubmit a manuscriptregisterthis articleBMC Psychiatry
 
BMC Psychiatry. 2012; 12: 107.
Published online Aug 10, 2012. doi:  10.1186/1471-244X-12-107
PMCID: PMC3441233
Neurofeedback for the treatment of children and adolescents with ADHD: a randomized and controlled clinical trial using parental reports
Nezla S Duric,corresponding author1,2 Jørg Assmus,#3 Doris Gundersen,#4 and Irene B Elgen5,6
1Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Helse Fonna Haugesund Hospital, Vinjesgate 10, Haugesund 5501, Norway
2Center for Child and Adolescent Mental Health, University of Bergen, Bergen, Norway
3Center for Clinical Research, Haukeland University Hospital, Bergen, Norway
4Department of Research, Helse Fonna Haugesund Hospital, Haugesund, Norway
5Department of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, Haukeland University Hospital, Haukeland, Norway
6Department of Clinical Medicine, University of Bergen, Bergen, Norway
corresponding authorCorresponding author.
#Contributed equally.
Nezla S Duric: nezlad/at/gmail.com; Jørg Assmus: jorg.assmus/at/helse-bergen.no; Doris Gundersen: doris.irene.gundersen/at/helse-fonna.no; Irene B Elgen: irene.elgen/at/helse-bergen.no
Received November 29, 2011; Accepted July 18, 2012.
Abstract
Background
A randomized and controlled clinical study was performed to evaluate the use of neurofeedback (NF) to treat attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in children and adolescents.
Methods
The ADHD population was selected from an outpatient clinic for Child and Adolescent Mental Health in Norway. Ninety-one of the 275 children and adolescents ranging in age from 6 to 18 years (10.5 years) participated in 30 sessions of an intensive NF program. The reinforcement contingency was based on the subjects’ production of cortical beta1 activity (15–18 Hz). The ADHD participants were randomized into three groups, with 30 in the NF group, 31 controls in a group that was given methylphenidate, and 30 in a group that received NF and methylphenidate. ADHD core symptoms were reported by parents using the parent form of the Clinician’s Manual for Assessment by Russell A. Barkley.
Results
Ninety-one children and adolescents were effectively randomized by age, sex, intelligence and distribution of ADHD core symptoms. The parents reported significant effects of the treatments, but no significant differences between the treatment groups were observed.
Conclusions
NF was as effective as methylphenidate at treating the attentional and hyperactivity symptoms of ADHD, based on parental reports.
Trial registration
Current Controlled Trials NCT01252446
Keywords: Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), Neurofeedback, Barkley rating scale for parents
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