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ADHD Does Not Exist Hardcover – February 18, 2014


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 336 pages
  • Publisher: HarperWave; 1 edition (February 18, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 006226673X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062266736
  • Product Dimensions: 8.3 x 5.6 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (47 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #330,983 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Roughly 11 percent of children and 4 percent of adults in America have been labeled with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). But is ADHD even an illness? Physician Saul proposes that ADHD is actually a collection of symptoms caused by other medical conditions: mood disorders (major depression or bipolar disorder), hearing loss, vision problems, substance abuse, hyperthyroidism, sleep problems, absence seizures, learning disabilities, and OCD. According to Saul, a false diagnosis of ADHD delays or prevents initiating appropriate treatment of the actual cause of symptoms like impulsivity and distractibility. Additionally, incorrect diagnoses of ADHD subjects individuals to unnecessary utilization of stimulants. Drugs like Ritalin and Adderall can produce side effects (notably sleep disturbance and decreased appetite) and be abused. Saul believes that medical practitioners, pharmaceutical companies, the media, and patients themselves have engendered an epidemic of misdiagnosed ADHD with serious consequences, including overuse of prescription medication. He writes that ADHD is too often a rushed, careless diagnosis or an excuse for behavior. Sure to ruffle some feathers, ADHD Does Not Exist is provocative and pensive. --Tony Miksanek

Review

“Parents will be better armed to ask more of the right questions after reading Saul’s book.” (Publisher's Weekly)

“Sure to ruffle some feathers, ADHD Does Not Exist is provocative and pensive.” (Booklist)

“A provocative, valuable guide for parents, school personnel and medical practitioners who deal with individuals showing symptoms routinely attributed to ADHD.” (Kirkus Review)

“…an accessible, detailed, and well-documented list of rule-outs for those who are exploring an ADHD diagnosis. VERDICT: Essential for parents and teachers.” (Library Journal)

More About the Author

Dr. Richard Saul is a professor, clinician, researcher, and radio personality. For more than fifty years Dr. Saul has incorporated his clinical and academic experience into the practice of behavioral neurology and development. He served as the chairman of the department of pediatrics at Highland Park Hospital, and the medical director of an HMO in North Suburban Chicago. While working with the Health Systems Agency, a federal program, he was responsible for containing healthcare costs in Illinois.

Dr. Saul has been a Castle and Connolly Best Doctor in Chicago for the past ten years. His work has been applauded in US News & World Report. He is a member of the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Academy of Neurology, and the Society for Behavior and Development. He earned his M.D. at Chicago Medical School. He lives with his wife outside of Chicago.

Customer Reviews

The most disturbing part about this book is the title which is very misleading.
Leonard Bennati
Pretty much Dr. Saul explains what causes the symptoms of ADHD, not that ADHD doesn't exist at all.
BooksArePortableMagic
I do not agree with him and I hope that people can see through the false information.
S.V.T

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

31 of 36 people found the following review helpful By BooksArePortableMagic on March 5, 2014
Format: Hardcover
The title is very misleading. Pretty much Dr. Saul explains what causes the symptoms of ADHD, not that ADHD doesn't exist at all.

The book talks mostly about ADHD in children as opposed to adults. I was looking for more information about ADHD in adults. Dr. Saul's explanation of the symptoms of ADHD in children is good but in adults it was severely lacking. ADHD presents itself differently in adults. I thought the chapter on sleep disorders chapters was best in regards to adult ADHD.

The chapter on mood disorders was good but lacking. I thought it focused far too much on bipolar disorder and not enough on unipolar depression. I was hoping for more of an explanation on how depression causes symptoms of ADHD beyond saying "depression makes you distracted."

The chapters on vision and hearing were excellent. My brother struggled with school terribly when he was a child. No one could figure out how to make him do better. This was before ADHD was common so he was never diagnosed with it. After being held back twice a doctor finally realized he needed tubes in his ears. It was life changing to say the least. His son just got tubes in his ears last month so it's definitely something genetic.

I found the chapter about iron deficiency useful although if iron deficiency is the most common nutritional problem, why wasn't it given more significance in the book?

I'm sure the other chapters are good as well but because I have no background in learning disorders, schizophrenia, asperger's (and so on) it's hard for me to say one way or the other.

What I found most baffling of all was the chapter on neurochemical distractability/impulsivity. Dr. Saul writes that NDI is NOT a formal diagnosis and does not appear in the medical books. What!?
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15 of 19 people found the following review helpful By S.V.T on May 26, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition
I can tell you that the majority of the book is just based on the author's opinions. He includes little evidence about the compelling and groundbreaking research that has shaped society's understanding of a very complex psychological condition. Instead, he focuses on information that is not supported and uses outdated research that existed before ADHD was even understood as a neurological condition. Nobody really understands ADHD and how it affect's the lives of individuals as well as their families. As somebody who has suffered from the condition since early childhood, I can tell you that it most certainly exists and causes a great deal of difficulty for people like me. I don't understand why Dr. Saul can boldly say that the condition does not exist. He might as well say that Schizophrenia, Bipolar Disorder, and Personality Disorders does not exist either. I do not agree with him and I hope that people can see through the false information. People who want to know more about ADHD should not consult this book by any means. Hopefully, those who do read the book take what Dr. Saul says with a grain of salt and understand that it does not represent the big picture of a very serious and lifelong condition.
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22 of 31 people found the following review helpful By Nancy R. Bryant, PhD on March 6, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Dr. Saul's refreshing look at this controversial, but widespread diagnosis is sorely needed, and should be a call to action for any professional in the position of having to assign this too-general label. To be clear, there is absolutely no question in MY mind that individuals of all ages suffer significantly from various combinations of the symptoms associated with the ADHD diagnosis: The problems most certainly DO exist, and they can wreak havoc in people's lives. However, the ADHD diagnosis as it currently written gives no information whatsoever about the CAUSES of the difficulties it describes, a point Dr. Saul illustrates brilliantly. While I too am a bit squeamish about the potentially misleading title of the book, it is in a sense quite accurate: What we are currently calling "ADHD" is really an undifferentiated combination of MANY conditions that can cause similar symptoms, and we do our patients/clients no service by failing to move past the convenient (and now popular) label and truly search out the root causes of their troubling symptoms. Dr. Saul's list of potential causes of "ADHD" symptoms is impressive (though I respectfully suggest that he add Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder and Traumatic Brain Injury to his list in future editions of his book!). The author's designation of many possible causes is very consistent with my own experience as a psychologist with a practice focused on assessment: Every client that fits the diagnostic label "ADHD" has a unique and different profile of strengths and challenges, and it is these patterns that best inform intervention, not the generic diagnosis. We owe it to our clients/patients to move beyond a "garbage can" diagnostic approach, and truly work toward differentiating and thoroughly describing the various causes and manifestations of the often significant problems we now pigeonhole so readily with the diagnostic label "ADHD".
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24 of 35 people found the following review helpful By Margaret Thompson on February 24, 2014
Format: Hardcover
Read this book if you want a new perspective on the most-popular ADHD diagnosis. I certainly found it eye-opening. Like so many popular ailments, the answers are never easy, never black and white. I think the author brings up some great points regarding the impacts that our stimulating culture has on the mental and emotional maturity of individuals: children and adults alike.

Parents should be attentiev to their children and address their unique needs. My dear cousin was labeled ADD when he was in grade school but my aunt who is a teacher and quite familiar with the rising prescription of Ritalin etc. for over-active students said "hell no" to the meds and with her husband took the hard effort to teach him how to behave.

I myself have wondered if I have ADHD, but honestly, I think its just life to feel scatter-brained at times. This book confirmed a lot of my instincts that underneath it alll, the real issues are sleep-deprivation, lack of exercise, emotional instability.. etc.

I am reluctant to throw the label out with the bathwater. After years of concentration-trouble, my husband was diagnosed ADHD and the therapy he has subsequently received has been so* helpful - for him and for us. (The ADHD Marriage Workbook: A User-Friendly Guide to Improving Your Relationship was a lifesaver) Are the doctors always right? Is science really the best answer? Why is the sky blue? There are so many questions in life. It's good to be informed, but in the end, you get to decide what works for you.
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