HealthDay News — Use of a clinical decision support module results in higher quality of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) diagnosis, according to a study published in Pediatrics.

Aaron E. Carroll, MD, from Indiana University in Indianapolis, and colleagues conducted a cluster randomized controlled trial in which the diagnosis and management of ADHD in 6- to 12-year-olds (84 children) were compared before and after implementation of a computer decision support system in four practices.

The researchers found that the use of structured diagnostic assessments dropped from 50 percent in the baseline period to 38% in the intervention period in the control group, while it rose in the intervention group from 60% to 81%. Even after controlling for age, gender, and race, the difference was statistically significant (odds ratio of structured diagnostic assessment in intervention group versus control group, 8.0).

Continue Reading

The number of ADHD core symptoms noted at the time of diagnosis was also significantly different between the groups. The percentage of patients who had documented medication adjustments, mental health referrals, and visits to mental health specialists was higher in the intervention group than the control group, although the study was not powered to detect changes in care and management.

“The introduction of a clinical decision support module resulted in higher quality of care with respect to ADHD diagnosis including a prospect for higher quality of ADHD management in children,” the researchers wrote.


  1. Carroll AE et al. Pediatrics. 2013; doi:10.1542/peds.2013-0933.