Disturbances of dopamine (DA), serotonin (5-HT) and/or norepinephrine (NE) functions are implied in attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). However, the precise cortical and subcortical mechanisms are still not fully understood. In the present survey, we conducted a PUBMED search, which provided 37 in vivo investigations with PET and SPECT on 419 ADHD patients and 490 controls. The retrospective analysis revealed increased striatal DA transporter (DAT) in adolescent as well as adult medication-naïve and not acutely medicated patients. In acutely medicated adults, DAT was not different from controls. Midbrain DAT was normal in adults, but decreased in adolescents. Striatal D 2 receptor (R) binding was normal in both adolescents (not acutely medicated) and adults (acutely medicated and not acutely medicated). In medication-naïve adults, DA synthesis was decreased in putamen and amygdala, but normal in the whole striatum and midbrain. In not acutely medicated adults, DA synthesis was reduced in putamen, whole striatum, prefrontal cortex, frontal cortex, amygdala and midbrain, whereas, in adolescents, no regional differences were observed. In adult (not acutely medicated) subjects, cingulate D 1 R was reduced. 5-HT transporter (SERT) binding was decreased in striatum and thalamus, but normal in midbrain, neocortex and limbic regions, whereas, in medication-naïve adults, SERT was diminished in striatum and midbrain, but normal in thalamus and neocortex. The findings suggest transient stages of synaptic DA shortage as well as DA surplus in individual brain regions, which elicit presynaptic as well as postsynaptic compensatory mechanisms, striving to attain functional homeostasis. Thereby, it remains a matter of debate, whether ADHD may be characterized by a general hypo- or hyperactivity of DA and/or 5-HT function.