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To investigate the effects of atomoxetine on emotional control in adults with ADHD.
We performed an integrated analysis using individual patient data pooled from three Eli Lilly-sponsored studies. An integrated analysis can be viewed as a meta-analysis of individual patient-level data, rather than study-level summary data.
Two populations were identified: a large sample of patients with pre-treatment baseline data (the “overall population”; n = 2846); and a subset of these patients with placebo-controlled efficacy data from baseline to 10 or 12 weeks after initiating treatment (the “placebo-controlled population”; n = 829). At baseline, in the overall population, ∼50% of ADHD patients had BRIEF-AS (Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function-Adult Version Self-Report) Emotional control subscores between 21 and 30, compared with ∼10% of normative subjects in the BRIEF-A manual. At endpoint, in the placebo-controlled population, atomoxetine led to a small (effect size 0.19) but significant (P = 0.013) treatment effect for emotional control. The effect size was 0.32 in patients with BRIEF-AS Emotional control scores > 20 at baseline. Improvements in emotional control correlated with improvements in the core ADHD symptoms and quality-of-life.
As deficient emotional control is associated with impaired social, educational and occupational functioning over and above that explained by core ADHD symptoms alone, improvements in emotional control may be clinically relevant.
At baseline, adults with ADHD were more likely to have impaired emotional control than normative subjects. In the adult ADHD patients, atomoxetine treatment was associated with improvements in emotional control, as well as in core ADHD symptoms and quality-of-life.
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