NEW YORK (AP) - The American Heart Association today recommended
children be screened for heart problems with an electrocardiogram
before taking drugs like Ritalin.
That drug is used to treat hyperactivity and attention-deficit
The association is based in Dallas.
Stimulant drugs can increase blood pressure and heart rate.
For most children, that isn't a problem. But in those with heart
conditions, it could make them more vulnerable to sudden cardiac
arrest - an erratic heartbeat that causes the heart to stop pumping
blood through the body - and other heart problems.
Government figures show about 2.5 million American children and
1.5 million adults take medication for attention-deficit
hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD.
The heart group is now recommending a thorough exam, including a
family history and an EKG, before children are put on the drugs.
To comment, the following rules must be followed:
Comments may be monitored for inappropriate content, but the station is under no legal obligation to do so.
If you believe a comment violates the above rules, please use the Flagging Tool to alert a Moderator.
Flagging does not guarantee removal.
Multiple violations may result in account suspension.
Decisions to suspend or unsuspend accounts are made by Station Moderators.
Questions may be sent to firstname.lastname@example.org. Please provide detailed information.
Viewers with disabilities can get assistance accessing this station's FCC Public Inspection File by contacting the station with the information listed below. Questions or concerns relating to the accessibility of the FCC's online public file system should be directed to the FCC at 888-225-5322, 888-835-5322 (TTY), or email@example.com.