One of the country’s leading authorities on ADHD, Dr. Vincent Monastra holds a Ph.D. in clinical psychology and is the Director of the FPI Attention Disorders Clinic in Endicott, NY.
I became aware of Dr. Monastra’s perspective on undetected and untreated vision problems compounding ADHD issues through our optometric colleague, Dr. Gary Williams, who has collaborated with him.
At the 8:13 mark of the following video, Dr. Monastra relates his approach. He notes that another kind of problem that isn’t picked up on routine evaluation, or even lab work done by a physician, are visual problems. When he first began doing EEG studies, he noted that certain children had significant problems maintaining focus and fixation with their eyes, which is a prerequisite for obtaining recordings without artifacts. At first he was puzzled as to why it was so hard for these children to keep their eyes focused. It was at that point that he sought out developmental optometrists who could conduct a comprehensive evaluation of visual tracking and convergence. He found that 20-25% of the ADHD population had visual issues contributing to signs and symptoms of ADHD, and there’s no medication that’s going to take that away.