ADHDPine Bark Extract

Positive effects of pycnogenol in children with ADHD

Here are the results from two studies that support the role of pycnogenol (pronounced pick-nah-geh-nol) to treat ADHD (attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder).

Sixty-one children received 1 mg/kg/day of pycnogenol or placebo for 4 weeks. Neither the doctors nor the children knew which treatment they received.

Based on the responses to a series of questionnaires, one month of taking pycnogenol resulted in a significant reduction in hyperactivity. It improved attention and visual-motor coordination, as well as the childrens’ ability to concentrate. There were no positive effects in the placebo group.


One month after stopping pycnogenol therapy, there was a relapse in symptoms.

How’d they do that?

Pycnogenol is an antioxidant, and this might be the source of its benefits in ADHD. In another published study, possibly in the same group of children, one month of taking pycnogenol caused a significant increase in GSH (reduced glutathione) levels and a decrease in GSSG (oxidized glutathione) levels compared to the patients taking a placebo. Pycnogenol brought the concentrations of GSH and GSSG into balance.


11/5/06 18:17 JR

Hi, I’m JR

John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at, a complementary and alternative medicine website.