A Rose By Any Other Name...

One of the problems with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder Inattentive type (ADHD-I and ADHD-PI) is that it is been called many things over the years.  In the 80s, the medical community recognized that Hyperactivity could occur with loss of focus. Researchers also discovered that the inattention could occur without the hyperactivity. They divided the groups into three subgroups which they called; ADD/H, the classic primarily hyperactive type. ADDM, inattention with hyperactivity , the combined type. They labeled ADD without hyperactivity as ADD/WO.

The little we know about ADD/WO is based on research which only started in the 80s. Considering a good research study often takes 10-15 years to complete, it is no surprise that we know very little about what was formerly called ADD/WO.

Somewhere in the late 1980s, the medical community decided that the above terminology was unduly cumbersome and they gave everyone with this condition the diagnosis of ADHD or AD/HD. This immediately proved to be a problem because the folks studying this condition knew that the processes going on in the brains of the subtypes were different.

Sooooooo..... in the mid 90s a new terminology was introduced. ADHD, Combined Type (ADHD,C), which requires six out of nine inattentive and six out of nine hyperactive symptoms; ADHD, Predominantly Inattentive Type (ADHD,IA), which requires at least six out of nine inattentive symptoms and less than six hyperactive symptoms; and ADHD, Hyperactive-Impulsive Type (ADHD,HI), which requires the presence of six out of nine hyperactive symptoms and less than six inattentive symptoms.

Finding information for those with inattentive ADHD is confusing. You can't just google one thing to find information on the subtypes because sometimes the subtype suffixes are separated by commas, colons, back slashes, forward slashes, or dashes. Sometimes the suffix is 'I', sometimes it is 'IA' and sometimes it is 'PI'. ADHD,IA, ADHD, I, or ADHD-I, ADHD/PI, ADHD/I, ADHD-PI, ADHD-IA, and ADHD/PI are some of the many names you will find for this subtype.

So what labels should I include for this post??? I think it would be best to just use them all.


  1. Thank You!
    Love your Blog.

    ADD-PI here and I needed that clarified. I began thinking "How did I miss these other types after so many months"

    I have had ADD always of course but it has been amplified by C-PSTD a year ago. I still adjust. This is common to happen. Noticed first I understand by noticing Males in mid-life being newly diagnosed with ADHD or ADD.

    Mine was late diagnosed but years befoe my PTSD. So I very much the difference. I additionally now have
    Dylexia, DysGraphia, Autism [2 layers] & F-TLE, Familial "Temporal Lobe Epilepsy" with HyperGraphia

    HyperGraphia merges[*1] with my HyperFocus for a lengthy read if you know me!

    Thanks, Randy

    [*1] It is my strong opinion that my HyperFocus entirely grasps the HyperGraphia and runs it. This Hybrid Disorder State I call HyperFocus•Graphis

    I had to personally term my designation to make clear that my HyperGraphia is half ADD based in myself. HyperFocus and my need to problem solve is what my HyperGraphia serves as a slave. If I allow the process now.

    I spent a year looking for others like myself to no avail. It's OK now though. The HyperGraphists accept me.

    Stigma being so easily spread, believe or not I have been until recently less accepted by the ADHD community as per my writing in the past gave people misconceptions of me.

    Which was six months ago terribly upsetting during an already difficult time. And sad because above all else I exist as a stereotypical ADD-PI male. My childhood compared to all the studies I read makes a late diagnosis easy.

    My ADD is always on but the other Disorders are not.

    Thanks, R

  2. Thanks Randy for your comments!! My recent post about the Primarily Inattentive child totally concurs with what you are saying and how easily this diagnosis is missed.


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