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Articles of Interest:

 

ADD/ADHD

ADHD Symptoms

ADHD:What Do We Do?

ADHD:Ritalin a Wonder Drug?

ADHD Diagnosis

ADHD Diagnosis: Page #2

ADHD Developmental Course

ADHD and Disruptive Disorders

ADHD Assessment for Your Child?

 ADHD Assessment Page 2   

Cause of ADHD: Is it biological?

Cause of ADHD: Is it environmental?

ADHD Drugs

ADHD Drugs Page #2

ADHD Drugs and Side Effects

ADHD Drugs: Predictions of Effectiveness

Antidepressants for ADHD?

Antihypertensives for ADHD

Website Map/All Articles

 

ADHD Symptoms: How common are they?

ADHD symptoms and other disruptive disorders

ADHD symptoms are sometimes difficult to differentiate from other behavioral disorders. There is much overlap between ADHD symptoms and the other behavioral disorders of conduct disorder and oppositional defiant disorder. Among the behavioral disorders, approximate 90% of children with conduct disorder would also meet the criteria for oppositional defiant disorder. Approximately 40% of children with ADHD symptoms also have oppositional defiant disorder, and about 40% of children with oppositional defiant disorder also have ADHD. It has been estimated that between 15% and 20% of children with ADHD symptoms have comorbid mood disorders (such as depression and anxiety disorders) with 20% to 25% having anxiety disorders and 6% to 20% having learning disorders. Other conditions which may occur comorbidly (at the same time) with ADHD symptoms and the behavioral disorders, include Tourette's disorder, drug and alcohol abuse and dependence, and mental retardation.

ADHD symptoms and prevalence:

Studies of ADHD symptoms and the other two disruptive disorders in community samples have demonstrated considerable variability, although they are usually very high. Some of the variability is due to methodological differences, the use of different systems of classification, and many other variables. The DSM-IV-TR estimates of prevalence rates for ADHD range from 2% to 7% in school-age children, although rates as high as 17.1% have been reported in community surveys. Rates for conduct disorder have been estimated as low as 0.9% for school age children , but as high as 8.7% for adolescents. The overall prevalence rate of oppositional defiant disorder varies across studies from 5.7% to 9.9%.

 

In school-age children, boys have a much higher prevalence rate of ADHD symptoms and other conduct disorders than girls do. In some clinic settings, the ratio of boys to girls is about 9:1, while in community settings it seems to be approximately 3:1. It seems, that teachers have a tendency to identify many more boys having ADHD symptoms than girls. The combined type of ADHD seems to be much more prevalent among both boys and girls. However, among children with the hyperactive-impulsive subtype of ADHD, the male to female ratio is approximately 4:1, while the inattentive subtype ratio falls to 2:1. In general, the prevalence of ADHD symptoms seems to decline with age, although some of the more current studies are finding that the disorder frequently persists into adulthood. Longitudinal studies are now beginning to identify that the existing cases of ADHD that persist into adulthood range may range from 4% to 75%. Once again, the tremendous variability in rates of occurrence of ADHD symptoms may be accounted for by methodological differences. Factors that appear to predict persistence of ADHD into adulthood include a positive family history for ADHD, and also the presence of other comorbid psychiatric symptoms (particularly aggression).

Some information from DSM-IV-TR Mental Disorders Diagnosis, Etiology & Treatment

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