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Pediatrics. 2013 Sep;132(3):e612-22. doi: 10.1542/peds.2012-3947. Epub 2013 Aug 26.

Autistic traits in children with and without ADHD.

Author information

1
Clinical and Research Programs in Pediatric Psychopharmacologyand Adult ADHD, Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, MA 02114-3139, USA.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To assess the implications of autistic traits (ATs) in youth with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) without a diagnosis of autism.

METHODS:

Participants were youth with (n = 242) and without (n = 227) ADHD and controls without ADHD in whom a diagnosis of autism was exclusionary. Assessment included measures of psychiatric, psychosocial, educational, and cognitive functioning. ATs were operationalized by using the withdrawn + social + thought problems T scores from the Child Behavior Checklist.

RESULTS:

A positive AT profile was significantly overrepresented among ADHD children versus controls (18% vs 0.87%; P < .001). ADHD children with the AT profile were significantly more impaired than control subjects in psychopathology, interpersonal, school, family, and cognitive domains.

CONCLUSIONS:

A substantial minority of ADHD children manifests ATs, and those exhibiting ATs have greater severity of illness and dysfunction.

KEYWORDS:

ADD; ADHD; AT; attention deficit disorder; attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder; autism traits; autistic traits; comorbidity; social disability

PMID:
23979086
PMCID:
PMC3876754
DOI:
10.1542/peds.2012-3947
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
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