So, as part of this continual quest for answers, comes this new study:
BBC NEWS | Health | 'Delay' in ADHD children's brains: "The brains of children with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) do not mature at the same rate as their peers, a US study says."This is the kind of research that gives me hope. Every time a study comes through that finds a little more concrete evidence for diagnosing mental disorders I read it avidly.
Articles on medical technology, such as this from Technology Review on MRI:
Indeed, fMRI studies over the last few years have provided researchers with startling images of the brain actually at work. A yet newer extension is MRI spectroscopy, another kind of functional imaging that monitors the activity of particular chemicals in the brain -- providing different clues to brain function than fMRI does. And most recently, researchers have pioneered an MRI technique called diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) that produces 3-D images of the frail, spidery network of wires that connects one part of the brain to another.And yet, even with all these advances, we still are not there yet. From a Mind Hacks Article:
When brain scans arrived, particularly those that measured brain function, it was hoped that there would finally be an objective test for many mental disorders based on the biology of the brain.
There has been some success in finding biological differences between the brains of healthy and diagnosed individuals. The problem is that these differences are not reliably diagnostic.
For example, when a group of people with depression and without depression are compared, reliable differences in brain function can be found. However, this only reflects the fact that individuals with the diagnosis are more likely to show the difference, but there are also individuals with the diagnosis who do not have the same differences.
But even with that, there is still more research being done:
This comes at a time when psychiatry is looking beyond the current diagnostic manuals as the sole definition of mental disorder, and considering the concept of the 'endophenotype' - measurable aspects of biology thought to be the key underlying components that increase risk for mental disorder.As a mother who hangs on every word, I just wanted to say, "Thank you, researchers and scientists" Because you keep trying, we have hope.