Prescription Drug Addicts are Faking Symptoms to Get Drugs

Posted on March 2nd, 2012
Posted in Articles

A recent study by the Hennepin County Medical Center released results showing that one in four patients with adult attention deficit hyper disorder (ADHD) fake or at least exaggerates their symptoms. All in an effort to get their physician to write a prescription for popular drugs like Adderall.

As prescription drug abuse is on the rise so are the claims in symptoms to obtain them, according to a recent medical article. This increase in unnecessary prescriptions has caused a medication shortage in Minnesota where legitimate cases can’t receive the drugs they need. In addition to ADHD, Adderall is used to treat narcolepsy and other serious illnesses. In an effort to combat the trend, Dr. Paul Marshall took it upon himself to create a stricter screening test to conclude symptoms. The neuropsychologist at HCMC believes that his test should be used on every patient claiming to suffer from ADHD.

Psychiatrist Dr. Gary Christenson also says physicians need to discriminate more. At his health clinic on a university campus in Minnesota, Dr. Christenson estimates that a new patient comes in on a weekly basis claiming to have ADHD. A recent survey showed that a quarter of students in Minnesota were diagnosed within a year of the study.

So the problem may lie in the clinicians who don’t properly screen patients, according to the studies. Shockingly, less than 30 percent of physicians across the country go the extra mile to detect dishonesty or exaggeration on self-reporting their symptoms. According to the National Institute of Mental Health, just less than five percent of the United States population actually suffers from ADHD. A majority of those diagnoses are given in childhood, not in college as many of these patients would have their doctors believe.

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