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Predictors of persistence in girls with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder: results from an 11-year controlled follow-up study

Authors


Joseph Biederman, Massachusetts General Hospital, Pediatric Psychopharmacology Unit, 55 Fruit Street, YAW 6A-6900, Boston, MA 02114, USA.
E-mail: jbiederman@partners.org

Abstract

Biederman J, Petty CR, O’Connor KB, Hyder LL, Faraone SV. Predictors of persistence in girls with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder: results from an 11-year controlled follow-up study.

Objective:  This study sought to examine the age-dependent persistence of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and its predictors in a large sample of girls with and without ADHD followed prospectively for 11 years into young adulthood.

Method:  Participants were girls with (N = 96) and without (N = 91) ADHD and were 6–17 years old at the baseline assessment (mean age, 11 years) and 15–30 years old at the follow-up assessment (mean: 22 years). Participants were comprehensively and blindly assessed with structured diagnostic interviews and assessments of cognitive, social, school, and family functioning.

Results:  At the 11-year follow-up, 33.3% met full criteria for ADHD, 29.2% showed partial persistence of the disorder, 10.4% had impaired functioning, and 4.2% were remitted but treated (77.1% of the sample). Predictors of persistence were psychiatric comorbidity, family history of psychopathology, and family and school functioning at baseline.

Conclusion:  These long-term, prospective, follow-up findings extend to girls findings that ADHD is persistent over the long term and can be predicted from psychosocial adversity and psychiatric comorbidity ascertained 11 years earlier.

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