Atomoxetine improves communication in a girl with semantic-pragmatic disorder


Kayo Inoko, MD, Inoko Mental Clinic, 2-70 Hanasaki-cho, Naka-ku, Yokohama 231-0063, Japan. Email:


This report describes the case of an ADHD girl (hereafter referred to as K) with semantic-pragmatic disorder, she was treated with atomoxetine. K was a 9-year-old girl. She had difficulty understanding words or sentences, finding words, and producing sentences. K also displayed symptoms of severe inattentiveness. K was diagnosed with DSM-IV-defined1 ADHD, predominantly the inattentive type. Her communication impairment was considered symptomatic of semantic-pragmatic disorder. K was started on atomoxetine, the dose was increased to 50 mg/day (dosage based on weight: 1.8 mg/kg). Her communication activities were improved a few weeks after atomoxetine 50 mg/day was administered. She was unable to organize information pertaining to words, and so could not use words in expressive language. These problems were mitigated through the administration of atomoxetine. Further prospective studies are needed to better understand the therapeutic effects of atomoxetine in patients with semantic-pragmatic disorder.