Transdermal Drugs: Clonidine Treatment for Hyperactive, Impulsive, & Autistic Children
Guanfacine and Clonidine are selective a-2 agonists. Though both drugs are primarily used in treating high blood pressure, transdermal or oral administration of selective a-2 agonists have shown improvement in patients with ASD, improving in tics, hyperactivity, attention span, and insomnia. The chief negative effects seen with guanfacine are fatigue, headache, insomnia, mood changes, and blurred vision. Clonidine improves mood instability, agitation, hyperactivity, and aggression in autistic patients.
Co-workers and Frankhauser conducted a double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial of Clonidine in ASD. The study offers evidences for the safety and clinical effectiveness of Clonidine in autistic and related disorders. A newer study demonstrates Clonidine improved in mood, sleep, aggression, and night time awakenings.
But further research and testing is required to better understand the overall benefits of taking either drug.