Purpose: To review the existing literature on attention deficit disorder in older adults, focusing on epidemiology, psychosocial impact, and treatment. To show current knowledge about those aspects of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).
Methods: We manually reviewed articles until July 2021. We used the electronic databases MEDLINE / PubMed, Embase, and Cochrane Database, and reviewed articles regardless of language. The search terms used were ADHD, elderly and older adults. We also included manuscripts cited as references in the articles obtained in the initial
search. Results: The described prevalence varies between 2.8% and 4.2%. ADHD symptoms in older adults negatively affect
their quality of life. The treatment is not clearly established since aside from the little knowledge and experience in ADHD in the elderly population, and these patients usually present significant comorbidities and frequent use of
polypharmacy, which challenge the adequate treatment.
Conclusions: ADHD in old age is poorly understood and underestimated. These symptoms must be taken into account
in the differential diagnosis of mental disorders at these ages. The interdisciplinary approach and more studies on this disorder in old age should be carried out.
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