Which medications in the drug class Alpha2 agonists, central-acting are used in the treatment of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)?

Updated: Oct 01, 2019
  • Author: Stephen Soreff, MD; Chief Editor: Glen L Xiong, MD  more...
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Alpha2 agonists, central-acting

Centrally acting antihypertensives clonidine and guanfacine have been used to treat children with ADHD. Inhibition of norepinephrine release in the brain may be the mechanism of action.

Guanfacine (Intuniv)

Guanfacine has a similar mechanism of action to clonidine but has a longer half-life and may be less sedative. The extended-release formulation (Intuniv) is indicated for children with ADHD aged 6-17 years as monotherapy or as adjunctive therapy to stimulant medications.

Clonidine (Kapvay)

Clonidine is a central alpha2 agonist. Its mechanism of action for ADHD is unknown. It is indicated for ADHD as adjunctive therapy to stimulants or as monotherapy. It is available as an extended-release tablet.

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