Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Open Wide

I'm not sure what to make of this, but I'm hearing about a connection between ADD and, of all things, tonsils.

The latest (and actually, it turns out this may have been out there for awhile), is that some studies are showing that children who have been diagnosed with ADD or ADHD, and then have tonsils and/or adenoids removed, are later found to be free of symptoms.

What frightens me a bit is tendency to leap to this conclusion: that tonsil removal is a "cure" for ADD (check out this FoxNews report, for example). It seems to me, however, that what this really means is that some kids with sleep disorders (caused by problems with their tonsils or adenoids) are being erroneously diagnosed with ADD in the first place.

This also says to me that, perhaps, the "mysterious" increase in incidence of ADD in the last 25 years could be chalked up to a number of things, one of which might be undiagnosed sleep disorders. Remember, up until 25 or 30 years ago, most kids got their tonsils removed as a matter of course. My older brother did, but a couple years later, when it would have been my turn, doctors were saying not to bother.

I've endured years of strep and excruciating bouts of tonsilitis, thanks to that, but that's another story . . .

Regardless, as a woman married to a guy with adult ADD (thank goodness for Concerta!) and a son who shows occasional signs of the same, I wonder how to incorporate this new information into my already tangled web of understanding.

Any thoughts?

For more on this topic, read here and here.

1 comment:

Christine said...

Here's another serendipitous link:
http://galvanized.wordpress.com/2007/08/21/aidans-great-tonsillectomy-adventure/

A mom talks about her son's tonsilectomy.


I think you'll know when to have a child's tonsils removed after reading this post!