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Eur Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2006 Mar;15(2):79-87. Epub 2006 Feb 15.

Adolescent outcome of disruptive behaviour disorder in children who had been treated in in-patient and day-treatment settings.

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  • 1Dept. of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, B01-324, University Medical Centre Utrecht, 85500, 3508 GA, Utrecht, The Netherlands. i.vanbokhoven@umcutrecht.nl


Although several studies have been conducted on the longitudinal course of childhood disruptive behaviours in community samples and in general psychiatric samples, little is known about adolescent adjustment in psychiatrically treated disruptive behaviour disorder (DBD) children. We examined a sample of adolescents (n = 47) who had been treated as children in an in-patient and/or day-treatment setting because of their severely disruptive behaviour. At follow-up, we found that half of the adolescents had a DBD diagnosis, and on average higher numbers of participants ever used soft drugs, had ever been in court, were not attending school when this was mandatory, and were smoking on a daily basis, as compared to comparison groups. There was, however, a large variance among the adolescents of our sample. When outcome was defined in terms of DBD diagnosis, living status, delinquency, school attendance, and smoking behaviour, 38 % had a positive outcome and 34 % had a poor outcome. For clinical purposes, it is important to recognise that there are large individual differences in outcome.

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