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J Clin Exp Neuropsychol. 2008 Jan;30(1):42-52. Epub 2007 Mar 12.

Dysfunction of right-hemisphere attentional networks in attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.

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Laboratory of Neuropsychology, University of Leuven, Leuven, Belgium.


Although differential right-hemisphere dysfunction has been implicated in attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) for more than 15 years, this relation remains controversial. Neuroimaging studies suggest asymmetric dysfunction, but neuropsychological evidence in support of this is rather inconsistent. This study examined attentional asymmetry in ADHD adults with a psychophysical extinction task. The interference from right- or left-hemifield distractors with contralateral orientation sensitivity was determined. In a previous study using this paradigm, right brain-damaged patients with left neglect displayed asymmetric distractor interference, meaning a significant interference from a right distractor with left-hemifield orientation sensitivity but no interference from a left distractor with right-hemifield orientation sensitivity. A similar but less pronounced asymmetry was observed in a group of ADHD adults (n = 16). These results indicate dysfunction of right-hemisphere attentional circuits in ADHD.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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