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Hyperactivity In Children

Volume 414: debated on Wednesday 29 October 1980

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asked Her Majesty's Government:What is their current best estimate of the number of children born hyperactive in the years 1976, 1977, 1978 and 1979, expressed as a percentage of total births for the years concerned.

Medical opinion in this country is that hyperactivity in children is not a clear-cut medical condition, but may be a symptom of a number of underlying causes. In the absence of a commonly accepted definition of "hyperactivity" it is impossible to estimate the number of children who are "hyperactive at birth" The prevalence of "hyperactive syndrome" among 10 and 11 year-olds has been estimated at about one in a thousand. This prevalence is much lower than that found in the United States and my right honourable friend is seeking to encourage research into the reasons for the difference.