Review: Chiropractic for children and adolescents with ADHD

68% of parents of these patients seek help from alternative practitioners, including chiropractors, according to researchers at Macquarie University, in Sydney, Australia.

Their review evaluates the evidence for chiropractic care to reduce inattention, impulsivity, and hyperactivity for young people with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

First, the details.

  • 22 studies were identified.
  • Of these, 3 studies were specific for pediatric and adolescent ADHD.

And, the results.

  • There was insufficient evidence to evaluate the value of chiropractic care for pediatric and adolescent ADHD.
  • The claim that chiropractic care improves this condition in these patients is only supported by low levels of scientific evidence.

The bottom line?

The authors concluded; “if chiropractic care for ADHD is to continue, more rigorous scientific research needs to be undertaken to examine the efficacy and effectiveness of chiropractic treatment.”

Dr. Anju Sawni, at Wayne State University School of Medicine, in Detroit, Michigan, came to a similar conclusion. “Despite a collection of case reports and case studies, there is no good evidence of the effectiveness of chiropractic manipulation.”

Earlier this year researchers from the US and UK reviewed chiropractic for ADHD and other non-musculoskeletal conditions. They concluded, “The efficacy of chiropractic care in the treatment of non-musculoskeletal disorders has yet to be definitely proven or disproven, with the burden of proof still resting upon the chiropractic profession.”

10/14/10 20:37 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.