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Book Forum: CHILD PSYCHIATRY   |    
Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: A Clinical Guide to Diagnosis and Treatment for Health and Mental Health Professionals, 2nd ed.
NANCY A. DURANT, M.D.
Am J Psychiatry 2001;158:153-153. doi:10.1176/appi.ajp.158.1.153
View Author and Article Information
Plainfield, N.J.

By Larry B. Silver, M.D., Washington, D.C., American Psychiatric Press, 1999, 280 pp., $29.95.

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Dr. Silver again presents a concise, well-written volume that effectively demystifies attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). This new edition comes at a time when there is great interest and ongoing controversy about this topic. The thorough discussion of the diagnostic process, criteria for establishing the diagnosis, and treatment modalities should prove of great value to physicians and other health care providers. Parents and educators will also find Dr. Silver’s book an excellent source of information.

Of special interest is Dr. Silver’s section on Associated Disorders. His chapter on "Specific Learning Disabilities" should be extremely useful to parents and teachers, as well as mental health professionals. In discussing modulating disorders, Dr. Silver helps his readers understand the difficulties many ADHD children experience with anxiety, anger management, and mood regulation.

In many places in the book, Dr. Silver emphasizes the neurological basis of ADHD and the lifelong implications of the diagnosis. He strongly encourages his readers to make every effort to determine whether the existence of ADHD symptoms is due to a neurological disorder or is secondary to social and emotional problems.

A multimodal treatment approach, including education about the disorder for both the patient and the family, counseling, behavior management, and the use of medications, is advocated. Dr. Silver stresses the need for involving the child’s school and teacher in the treatment strategy. His chapter on psychopharmacology gives a clear discussion of currently used medications. He closes the section on treatment with a chapter on "Controversial Therapies," which should help the professional assist parents in evaluating the many proposed alternative approaches to coping with the symptoms of ADHD.

Many of the chapters close with a summary. These summaries and the last two chapters covering ADHD in adults and relevant educational and civil laws provide a springboard to further exploration of this important disorder. Unfortunately, Dr. Silver does not provide a bibliography. He does, however, give an appendix with the full addresses and the web sites of the major organizations relating to ADHD and learning disabilities, as well as professional and legal organizations.

Dr. Silver deserves our thanks for again presenting a useful and informative volume on ADHD.

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