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Adverse Effects of Non-Stimulant ADHD Drugs: Atomoxetine, Alpha-Agonists

[ Vol. 7 , Issue. 1 ]


Myrtha Gregoire-Bottex* and Katherine Soe   Pages 11 - 14 ( 4 )


Background: Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a widespread diagnosis that affects many children and adolescents’ ability to function and succeed in academics, socially, or other situations. Non-stimulant medications have become widely utilized in this population, especially in stimulant-resistant individuals, whether due to poor efficacy or intolerance of side effects. However, these, too, harbor their own side effect profiles, including cardiovascular and sleep or energy level disturbances.

Objectives: We review the literature in discussion of the presentation and management of these adverse events for non-stimulant medications for ADHD, with a particular focus on atomoxetine and alpha agonists guanfacine and clonidine.

Conclusion: Non-stimulants are for the most part well tolerated but monitoring for cardiac and sleep difficulty is warranted.


Mental health, children and adolescents, psychopharmacology, ADHD, attention deficit disorder, atomoxetine, alpha agonists.


Department of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine, Western Michigan University, Homer Stryker M.D. School of Medicine, 1000 Oakland Drive, Kalamazoo, Michigan, MI, Department of Pediatrics and Psychiatry, Indiana University School of Medicine and Riley Hospital for Children, 705 Riley Hospital Drive, Rm 5867, Indianapolis, Indiana 46202

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