Document Type


Journal Title

Journal of child and adolescent psychopharmacology

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OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this research was to provide an initial examination of the effects of atomoxetine and stimulants on emotional expression using a newly developed scale for assessing emotional expression in children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

METHOD: The parent-rated Expression and Emotion Scale for Children (EESC) was collected during two studies. During a cross-sectional validation study, the EESC was completed to assess the child's current treatment and retrospectively for previous medication. In a randomized, placebo-controlled trial of atomoxetine, the EESC was collected at baseline and endpoint.

RESULTS: In the validation study, no statistically significant differences in EESC scores were found between groups taking atomoxetine (n = 74) and stimulants (n = 105). Patients who switched from a stimulant to atomoxetine (n = 40) had greater improvement in emotional expression than those switched to another stimulant (n = 21) (p = 0.008). In the clinical trial, no difference in rates of worsening of emotional expression were observed (atomoxetine 8.8%, placebo 12.3%; p = 0.440).

CONCLUSION: No treatment differences in emotional expression were observed based on current medications. However, stimulant patients needing to switch medications may have greater improvements in emotional expression by switching to atomoxetine.

MeSH Headings

Adrenergic Uptake Inhibitors, Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity, Central Nervous System Stimulants, Child, Cross-Sectional Studies, Double-Blind Method, Drug Administration Schedule, Emotions, Female, Humans, Male, Personality Assessment, Propylamines




This is a copy of an article published in the Journal of child and adolescent psychopharmacology © 2007 copyright Mary Ann Liebert, Inc.; Journal of child and adolescent psychopharmacology is available online at:

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