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Aust N Z J Psychiatry. 2016 Jun;50(6):548-56. doi: 10.1177/0004867415609423. Epub 2015 Oct 12.

Psychiatric comorbidities of adults with early- and late-onset attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder.

Author information

1
Department of Psychiatry, National Taiwan University Hospital and College of Medicine, Taipei, Taiwan Department of Psychiatry, Far Eastern Memorial Hospital, Taipei, Taiwan.
2
Department of Psychiatry, National Taiwan University Hospital and College of Medicine, Taipei, Taiwan Department of Psychiatry, National Defense Medical Center, Tri-Service General Hospital, Beitou Branch, Taipei, Taiwan.
3
Department of Psychiatry, National Taiwan University Hospital and College of Medicine, Taipei, Taiwan Graduate Institute of Brain and Mind Sciences, Graduate Institute of Clinical Medicine, and Graduate Institute of Epidemiology and Preventive Medicine, National Taiwan University, Taipei, Taiwan gaushufe@ntu.edu.tw.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

We evaluated the psychiatric comorbidities in adults who were diagnosed with Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental disorders, 5th edition attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder as a function of recalled symptom onset before and after the age of 7 years and whether the childhood attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder symptoms were associated with psychiatric comorbidities.

METHOD:

In all, 214 adults who were diagnosed with Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental disorders, 5th edition attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder and 174 non-attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder controls (aged 17-40 years) received psychiatric interviews to confirm their previous and current attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder status and other psychiatric diagnoses. Demographics and risks of lifetime psychiatric disorders were compared among three groups: (1) attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, onset <7 years (early-onset); (2) attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, onset between 7 and 12 years (late-onset) and (3) non-attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder controls. We also tested the effects of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder symptoms on the risk of later psychiatric comorbidities by Cox regression analyses.

RESULTS:

Regardless of the age of onset, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder was significantly associated with a wide range of psychiatric comorbidities. There were similar comorbid patterns between early- and late-onset attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder. Regardless of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder diagnosis, increased severity of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder symptoms was associated with higher risks of oppositional defiant disorder, conduct disorder, dysthymia and sleep disorder but not major depression, which was associated with the attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder diagnosis.

CONCLUSION:

Our findings suggest that elevating the threshold of age of onset to 12 years in Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental disorders, 5th edition would not over-diagnose attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder in the adult population. Recalled childhood attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder symptom severity was correlated with conduct disorder, oppositional defiant disorder, dysthymia and sleep disorders.

KEYWORDS:

ADHD; DSM-5; adult; depressive disorder; psychiatric comorbidity

PMID:
26460330
DOI:
10.1177/0004867415609423
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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