23 doctors weighed in:
Are ADHD and autism related?
23 doctors weighed in

Dr. Carla Enriquez
Pediatrics
13 doctors agree
In brief: Not at all
Autism spectrum children (pdd) are devastatingly effected by their neurotrauma.
Adhd kids have a deficiency in executive brain function, but treated are exceedingly successful and well adjusted people. Pdd kids do not have the cortical capacity to process many types of linguistic or social inputs. Adhd kids can be socially awkward, but PDD kids are social outliers. The two are incomparable.

In brief: Not at all
Autism spectrum children (pdd) are devastatingly effected by their neurotrauma.
Adhd kids have a deficiency in executive brain function, but treated are exceedingly successful and well adjusted people. Pdd kids do not have the cortical capacity to process many types of linguistic or social inputs. Adhd kids can be socially awkward, but PDD kids are social outliers. The two are incomparable.
Dr. Carla Enriquez
Dr. Carla Enriquez
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6 comments
Dr. Jon Ahrendsen
But you can actually see both conditions in the same person. I feel some kids with ADHD have some shared traits of PDD, but not enough to meet the diagnostic criteria for a formal diagnosis. I have also seen some kids with a formal diagnosis of autism, have significant improvment with ADHD medication.
Dr. William Holmes
Would agree with Dr. Ahrendsen's comment. The two diagnoses differ in many respects, but it is possible for kids with Autistic Spectrum problems to also have ADHD. In fact, it is not unusual.
Dr. Alfredo Soto
Psychiatry
3 doctors agree
In brief: No
Autism is an illness that involves difficulties in relating socially to other people.
It has been shown to affect different areas of the brain. Adhd is an illness that involves problems with paying and maintaining attention as well as staying calm and having fidgetiness in general. People with autism often (but not always) have symptoms of adhd, but most people with adhd have good social skills.

In brief: No
Autism is an illness that involves difficulties in relating socially to other people.
It has been shown to affect different areas of the brain. Adhd is an illness that involves problems with paying and maintaining attention as well as staying calm and having fidgetiness in general. People with autism often (but not always) have symptoms of adhd, but most people with adhd have good social skills.
Dr. Alfredo Soto
Dr. Alfredo Soto
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3 comments
Dr. Alfredo Soto
ADHD usually involves problems with the frontal love not working fast enough
Dr. Eric Weisman
Frontal love is never having to say your sorry
Dr. Johanna Fricke
Pediatrics - Developmental & Behavioral
1 doctor agrees
In brief: 40-70% of folks with
Autistic Spectrum Disorder also have ADHD.
Signs of adhd = inattention, hyperactivity & impulsivity. Signs of ASD= impairments in social communication & reciprocal social interaction + stereotypies or narrow, restricted areas of interest, so they are different but can co-exist. Seek evaluation from a developmental/behavioral pediatrician, child psychiatrist, neuropsychologist & school district.

In brief: 40-70% of folks with
Autistic Spectrum Disorder also have ADHD.
Signs of adhd = inattention, hyperactivity & impulsivity. Signs of ASD= impairments in social communication & reciprocal social interaction + stereotypies or narrow, restricted areas of interest, so they are different but can co-exist. Seek evaluation from a developmental/behavioral pediatrician, child psychiatrist, neuropsychologist & school district.
Dr. Johanna Fricke
Dr. Johanna Fricke
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2 comments
Dr. Eric Weisman
The nuts and bolts mechanisms of ASD and ADHD and related attentional disorders are slowly being teased apart. ASD seem to have developmental neuronal migration deficits in common. I cannot think of a cognitive disorder that does not in some way have an effect on some aspect of attention or vigilance.
Dr. Johanna Fricke
Nether can I.
Dr. John Chiu
Internal Medicine - Allergy & Immunology
In brief: Unknown
but unlikely since not all autistic people have ADHD and in fact some may have extraordinary ability to focus on subjects they are good at and most ADHD patients don't have autism.
The cause for either is unknown.

In brief: Unknown
but unlikely since not all autistic people have ADHD and in fact some may have extraordinary ability to focus on subjects they are good at and most ADHD patients don't have autism.
The cause for either is unknown.
Dr. John Chiu
Dr. John Chiu
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Dr. Jalal Zuberi
Pediatrics
In brief: They may be
The way to understand is to realize that while most children with ADHD will never be diagnosed with Autism or ASD but most ASD patients would have ADHD symptoms.

In brief: They may be
The way to understand is to realize that while most children with ADHD will never be diagnosed with Autism or ASD but most ASD patients would have ADHD symptoms.
Dr. Jalal Zuberi
Dr. Jalal Zuberi
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Dr. Traci Buxton
Family Medicine
In brief: Maybe
Recent genetic studies have shown that people with both adhd and autism may have an abnormality on the same chromosome.
The causes of both conditions are poorly understood and more research is needed before we know for sure.

In brief: Maybe
Recent genetic studies have shown that people with both adhd and autism may have an abnormality on the same chromosome.
The causes of both conditions are poorly understood and more research is needed before we know for sure.
Dr. Traci Buxton
Dr. Traci Buxton
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Dr. Mary Ann Block
General Practice
In brief: Yes
I have found that the underlying causes of adhd symptoms and autism symptoms are often the same.
There is just a difference in how the symptoms manifest. In autism, they are more severe. I think the 2 disorders are on a continuum.

In brief: Yes
I have found that the underlying causes of adhd symptoms and autism symptoms are often the same.
There is just a difference in how the symptoms manifest. In autism, they are more severe. I think the 2 disorders are on a continuum.
Dr. Mary Ann Block
Dr. Mary Ann Block
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3 comments
Dr. Alfredo Soto
Underlying causes of autism are unknown. Underlying causes of ADHD include genetics and environment
Dr. Carla Enriquez
Where do you get this stuff? Data please!
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Dr. Jonathan Jassey
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