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what is siblings' risk of ADHD?

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Old 04-16-2005, 07:12 PM   #1
Join Date: Apr 2005
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kndac HB User
Question what is siblings' risk of ADHD?

This may be a dumb question, and I might be looking for reassurance where there unfortunately, isn't any...but I would like to know how many of you with one ADHD child have other children with the condition as well. I have a 5 year old (VERY sure he is ADHD-impulsive type) and a 2 yr old daughter, who is not showing any signs of it. I wonder about the odds of her showing symptoms at a later point in time, and the fear of having another child with ADHD is stopping us from trying for a third child. Of course I would love the child regardless, but dealing with one child with ADHD is so draining....I can't imagine having 2 with it.

I should say I think it comes from me....I have the inattentive type (only found out less than a year ago, was on strattera which seemed to work, but then I got off it to prepare for getting pregnant). How do you wonderful parents out there deal with more than one adHD child, especially if you have the condition yourself?

Any advice...? Thanks and take care Will's mom

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Old 04-17-2005, 05:46 AM   #2
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MelissaNC HB User
Re: what is siblings' risk of ADHD?

Hi, Will's Mom! I also have ADHD (combined form, though low on the hyperactivity), and both of my children have it to a degree. My oldest has the inattentive form pretty badly, but he also has extinuating circumstances. My youngest has the hyperactive (what I believe you're calling the impulsive) form mildly. He's really no trouble at home except that sometimes he gets to talking way too much and we just have to remind him to 'think' some things instead of saying them out loud. He's mildly disruptive in school, too, but not horribly. A mild dose of Adderall really helps him. We had taken him off of it at one point and he started having a little more trouble in school, so we're going to start him back on it. The extinuating circumstances with my oldest is that when he was born he was not breathing. It took them over two minutes to get him to take his first breath, and that initial lack of oxygen (if long enough like his was) can cause minute brain damage that appears in the form of ADD. So he got a double-whammy with it. If he had been breathing right off the bat, I think he'd only maybe have a mild case, too.

We have no plans to have anymore children, but that is mostly just because we feel that two is the right number for us. We like the stage we're one in car seats or diapers, or taking bottles. (Our guys are 12 & 9 now.) ADD/ADHD is hereditary, from what I've learned, but that doesn't have to mean that subsequent children would have bad cases. I'd suggest talking to your doctor in depth before making up your mind either way.


Old 04-25-2005, 09:23 PM   #3
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stucker77 HB User
Re: what is siblings' risk of ADHD?

Hi Melissa, I have been reading different posts and yours made me stop and think for a minute. I have a daughter thats 7(oldest), and she has been diagnosed ADHD, OCD, PTSD, Bi polar and has severe anti social issues. She has been on 8 different meds, she has been taking Ritalin LA for about 8 months now. Every med she has been on for the ADHD works for the first 3 or 4 months, then wears off. The dr says her body gets immune to the med. She is also on 3 others including the Ritalin. My concern, not only that she is the spitting image of her father(my ex), but when she was born they did an emergency c-section on me. I was in labor for 2 days with minimal progress, and then all of a sudden she wasnt breathing. The drs said she was stressed. Reading your post really made me wonder if that had any effect on her. She has been to a neurologist, she has had the MRI and the brain wave tests done. Is there any other tests or anyone that would have any answers for me that I am overlooking? I appreciate the info and posts like these so as parents we dont feel so blank. Thank You

Old 04-26-2005, 05:42 AM   #4
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MelissaNC HB User
Re: what is siblings' risk of ADHD?

To tell you the truth, I wouldn't even know where to tell you to begin. My son was born with birth defects, along with the fact that he wasn't breathing, and he's had so many tests done over the years for all kinds of things that I'm no longer sure of exactly what everything was. I know our pediatrician was the one to tell us about the oxygen-deprevation being a cause of ADD, but he'd seen the results of all of tests done by the other doctors (we have a team of doctors who deal with my son's birth defect related issues, plus our pediatrician who works with them and does everything else), so I don't know exactly which one test, or which combination of tests, might have confirmed what he already suspected. Bryson has had lots of CT scans, overnight tests that monitored brain waves, all kinds of stuff. At 12 1/2, he's had 26 operations and all the testing that comes before and with those. Plus, when he was 6 months old he developed Hydrocephalus (swelling of the brain caused by too much cerebro-spinal fluid) and had to have an operation to insert a shunt (drain) to relieve the pressure. Hydrocephalus can cause brain damage, though I think we caught his in time...but it could still have done a tiny bit of damage, too. I'm thinking of asking his doctor about another CT scan, since it's been a while since he's had one, and the ADD seems to be worse than it was a few years ago. Maybe there's something else going on in there, too? Right now I'm going to monitor him myself, but I think I might just suggest that at our next appointment...

As for someone who might could help you further, this is just a thought and may or may not help. We've never seen a neurologist, but have always seen a neurosurgeon. I really don't know what the complete differences are, except that one does operations and the other doesn't. But, there may also be some other differences that might be worth checking into. We see a pediatric neurosurgeon from the local hospital (a world-renowned trauma center & hospital, so they have lots of top specialists). Perhaps there is some difference between the two that might make a neurosurgeon a better choice for you guys as well?

Hope something here has helped! Sorry I couldn't answer questions about the tests better...there have just been so very many that they've pretty much become a tangle in my brain. I remember the CT's because he's had so many of them, and the brain-wave tests because he hated the electrodes so much, but the rest are just remembered as a bunch of 'tests' in general.


Old 04-27-2005, 08:10 PM   #5
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resqmanswife HB User
Re: what is siblings' risk of ADHD?

Well yep I'd say it's genetics and likely to have more than one with it. My 12 yr. old daughter was diagnosed ADD in the 3rd grade(after fighting since Kdg) my 7 yr.old sonwas diagnosed this yr. in I think oct/nov with ADHD I tried to him diagnosed in Kdg. also. And I have been diagnosed and finally started Adderall today (yippee) for Adult ADD. I have a niece and nephew diagnosed with it and numerous other family members not diagnosed but I'm sure they have it also.

Now how to deal with it honestly it's a huge ordeal at our house, I'm sure alot of it has to do with the fact I haven't been treated for so long and trying to deal with my kids issues. That and the 3 of us are so different in our ADD yet so alike it is REALLY hard at our house.
I think the key for us and anyone really but esp. those of us with multiple cases in a household is going to be structure and schedule and believe me I KNOW how hard this is almost impossible for me.

We are still tweaking meds for all 3 of us and between us take alot of different ones. My daughter is on Concerta in the am and is starting Ritalin in the afternoon to give her that short term boost she needs after school to do homework.
My son is on Concerta and Strattera but he is having issues with them and I don't like it so we have to try and deal with these to.
I started Adderall today and I'm praying I see a difference soon I'm on a low dose and will increase if needed. I have been on Strattera but had a bad side effect and Ritalin did nothing for me at a fairly good dosage.

I have a 4 yr. old daughter that is exactly like my oldest daughter was at this age and I'm afraid I'm looking for signs that aren't there or I'm reading things into the signs that are but I know from experience that genetics aren't in her favor.
OYY my poor hubby 3 kids and wife all ADD/ADHD lol he may need drugs next.LOL
All 3 of my pregnancies were normal with normal deliveries no complications, so we don't have that as an issue for my family it really is just all in the family.
Boy I think I really wandered here I'm sorry.
It's EXHAUSTING to have 2 kids with ADD/HD but they are the most incredible loving,creative kids there are I just had to realize that and it has made it easier by no means is it easy but it is easier.
Personally I wouldn't let ADD stop me from having another if it's what I truly wanted but I would make sure you have a clear handle on the ones you have as far as diagnoses/treatment/schedules first esp. if you are also.

I am reading and have read some really good books on Adult ADD and Women with Adult ADD and while it is helping me ALOT it is giving me some insight on my kids and how they are thinking also. Have you read any books on all of this?
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