ADHD or Not: The Eyes May Have It

Eye movement might be a possible indicator of whether someone has or not, according to a new study from researchers at Tel Aviv University in Israel. The researchers tracked the involuntary eye movements of two groups of adults. One group had been diagnosed with ADHD, the other had not. The ADHD group took the test without medication and then a second time with medication. Methylphenidate, a generic form of Ritalin, was used in the test.

The researchers say they discovered a connection between ADHD and eye movement. When not using medication, adults in the ADHD group had difficulty trying to slow or stop their eye movements “in anticipation of visual stimuli.” Taking medication reduced that difficulty. One of the researchers, Dr. Moshe Fried, said the team had two goals in doing the research. The first was to find a new way to diagnose ADHD. The second was to find out if ADHD medication really works or is simply a placebo. He says both goals were met. The team now plans to conduct more extensive research on larger groups of people.

The researchers believe that the results of their study could provide a new biological model for identifying ADHD that would be more reliable than the current method of using clinical observations and questionnaires. The potential outcome: Fewer kids overlooked or misidentified as having ADHD.

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About the author

About the author

Geri Coleman Tucker is a freelance writer and editor and a former deputy managing editor for