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Pediatr Int. 2004 Jun;46(3):346-52.

Behavioral outcome including attention deficit hyperactivity disorder/hyperactivity disorder and minor neurological signs in perinatal high-risk newborns at 4-6 years of age with relation to risk factors.

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  • 1Department of Pedology, Kyoto Women's University, Kyoto, Japan.



Diagnostic problems with the criteria of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in the Diagnostic Statistical Manual, 4th edn, have been identified. The aim of this study was to clarify whether the minor neurological signs test (MNT) the authors had previously reported was a predictor for the criteria of ADHD or hyperactivity disorder (HD) in perinatal risk children at 4-6 years of age and what kind of risk factors related to MNT.


A total of 136 children discharged from neonatal intensive care units were examined at the age of 4-6 years by a developmental neuropediatrician using both MNT and diagnostic criteria of DSM-IV ADHD/ICD-10 (International Classification of Diseases, 10th edn) HD. SPSS base and professional were used for statistical analysis.


On comparison of diagnostic criteria between ADHD (11.0%) and HD (27.5%), the incidence in the same subjects showed significant difference. MNT scores showed significant correlation with criteria of ADHD (P < 0.01) and HD (P < 0.05). Diagnostic validity of MNT for predicting ADHD was demonstrated with 78% sensitivity and 79% specificity. High positive rates on MNT did not show a significant difference between the very low birthweight (VLBW) and non-low birthweight (NLBW) groups. Behavioral outcome with relation to risk factors were analyzed using multiple regression analysis. Apgar 5 in the NLBW group and toxemia of pregnancy and small for gestational age (SGA) in VLBW group were highly correlated with behavioral outcome.


Minor neurological signs test score was a significant predictor for criteria of ADHD and HD. High incidences of positive MNT were suspected in not only VLBW children but also NLBW children and Apgar 5 in NLBW children and toxemia of pregnancy and SGA in VLBW children influenced behavioral outcome.

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