Skip to main content
Psych Congress  

Review of Atomoxetine Treatment in Adults with Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder

Daniel Walker, PhD
Oren Mason, MD
David Clemow, PhD
Kathleen Day, RN, MSN
Lenard Adler, MD
Eli Lilly and Company

Prevalence and natural history data suggest that up to two-thirds of children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) will continue to manifest ADHD symptoms into adulthood. An epidemiologic, community-based study found the prevalence of adult ADHD to be 4.4%. There is growing recognition that adult ADHD can result in negative consequences for the individual including reduced socioeconomic success, functional impairment, and a diminished quality of life. ADHD is often associated with a number of comorbid psychiatric disorders, including mood and anxiety disorders and substance use disorders. Atomoxetine is a nonstimulant, selective noradrenergic reuptake inhibitor approved by the FDA for treatment of ADHD in children, adolescents, and adults on the basis of six pivotal registration studies, two of which were in adults. Many additional clinical studies have been completed that further demonstrate that treatment with atomoxetine in adults with ADHD is efficacious with an acceptable safety profile. The purpose of this review is to summarize the efficacy and safety of atomoxetine treatment for adult ADHD including efficacy data in special populations such as patients with substance use disorder and anxiety disorder. We searched the databases Embase, MEDLINE, and PsycINFO using the terms "ADHD" AND "adult" AND "atomoxetine" capturing publications from 1998 to early 2014. We also address the issue of healthcare provider and patient perception of efficacy versus results of clinical trials and past experience with other ADHD medications. We will also provide a review of functional outcomes in adult patients with ADHD treated with atomoxetine. Safety and tolerability issues will also be addressed.

Back to Top