Predicting methylphenidate response in long-term survivors of childhood cancer: a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, crossover trial.
Author(s): Conklin HM, Helton S, Ashford J, Mulhern RK, Reddick WE, Brown R, Bonner M, Jasper BW, Wu S, Xiong X, Khan RB
Affiliation(s): Division of Behavioral Medicine, St. Jude Children's Research Hospital, Memphis, TN 38105, USA. email@example.com
Publication date & source: 2010-03, J Pediatr Psychol., 35(2):144-55. Epub 2009 May 22.
Publication type: Clinical Trial; Randomized Controlled Trial; Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
OBJECTIVE: To investigate the methylphenidate (MPH) response rate among childhood survivors of acute lymphoblastic leukemia (ALL) and brain tumors (BTs) and to identify predictors of positive MPH response. METHODS: Cancer survivors (N = 106; BT = 51 and ALL = 55) identified as having attention deficits and learning problems participated in a 3-week, double-blind, crossover trial consisting of placebo, low-dose MPH (0.3 mg/kg), and moderate-dose MPH (0.6 mg/kg). Weekly teacher and parent reports on the Conners' Rating Scales were gathered. RESULTS: Following moderate MPH dose, 45.28% of the sample was classified as responders. Findings revealed that more problems endorsed prior to the medication trial on parent and teacher ratings were predictive of positive medication response (p < .05). CONCLUSIONS: MPH significantly reduces attention problems in a subset of childhood cancer survivors. Parent and teacher ratings may assist in identifying children most likely to respond to MPH so prescribing may be optimally targeted.