Co-existing psychiatric problems in ADHD in the ADORE cohort

Steinhausen, Hans-Christoph ; Nøvik, Torunn ; Baldursson, Gisli ; Curatolo, Paolo ; Lorenzo, Maria ; Rodrigues Pereira, Rob ; Ralston**, Stephen ; Rothenberger, Aribert

In: European Child & Adolescent Psychiatry, 2006, vol. 15, p. i25-i29

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    Abstract : Objective : To study the impact of co-existing psychiatric problems with ADHD on behavioural features, psychosocial functioning and quality of life in subjects of the ADORE cohort (N=1,478). Methods : The following six groups of associated psychiatric problems with ADHD were compared: oppositional-defiant disorder or conduct disorder only (ODD/CD); anxiety or depressive disorder only (ANX/DEP); tic/Tourette's disorder only (TIC/ Tourette's); developmental co-ordination disorder only (DCD); two or more associated conditions; and none. Dependent variables included the ADHD Rating Scale-IV, the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire, the Clinical Global Impression-Severity scale, the Children's Global Assessment Scale and the Child Health Illness Profile-Child Edition. Results : Having multiple co-existing psychiatric problems increased the severity of ADHD in all domains, be it behavioural features, psychosocial impairment or deterioration of quality of life. A similar though less consistent pattern applied to subjects with co-existing ODD/CD. Conclusions : The ADORE study provides impressive evidence for the far-reaching consequences of co-existing psychiatric problems in children with ADHD that warrant intensive consideration in clinical assessment and treatment