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J Atten Disord. 2015 Sep;19(9):741-54. doi: 10.1177/1087054713513799. Epub 2013 Dec 11.

The Prevalence of ADHD in a Population-Based Sample.

Author information

1
University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center, Albuquerque, NM, USA arowland@salud.unm.edu.
2
University of New Mexico Health Sciences Center, Albuquerque, NM, USA.
3
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS), NIH, Dept. of Health and Human Services, Research Triangle Park, NC, USA.
4
Duke University, Durham, NC, USA.
5
University of North Carolina School of Medicine, Chapel Hill, NC, USA.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

Few studies of ADHD prevalence have used population-based samples, multiple informants, and Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (4th ed.; DSM-IV) criteria. Moreover, children who are asymptomatic while receiving ADHD medication often have been misclassified. Therefore, we conducted a population-based study to estimate the prevalence of ADHD in elementary school children using DSM-IV criteria.

METHOD:

We screened 7,587 children for ADHD. Teachers of 81% of the children completed a DSM-IV checklist. We then interviewed parents using a structured interview (DISC). Of these, 72% participated. Parent and teacher ratings were combined to determine ADHD status. We also estimated the proportion of cases attributable to other conditions.

RESULTS:

Overall, 15.5% of our sample met DSM- (4th ed.; text rev., DSM-IV-TR) criteria for ADHD (95% CI [14.6%, 16.4%]); 42% of cases reported no previous diagnosis. With additional information, other conditions explained 9% of cases.

CONCLUSION:

The prevalence of ADHD in this population-based sample was considerably higher than 3% to 7%. To compare study results, the DSM criteria need standardization.

KEYWORDS:

ADD/ADHD; Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity; comorbidity; epidemiology; prevalence

PMID:
24336124
PMCID:
PMC4058092
DOI:
10.1177/1087054713513799
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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