Frequency of symptoms of attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder in autistic children

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Abstract

Background: Both DSM-IV and the ICD-10 exclude diagnosis of attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) when autism diagnostic is present. Some authors suggest, however, that autism can be associated to other comorbidity amongst which the ADHD. Objective: To estimate prevalence of ADHD in children with autism. Method: Children were selected from a specialized school, all of then had previous diagnosis or diagnostic suspicion of autism. The Brazilian version of the KIDDIE-SADS PL was applied to parents for diagnostic of ADHD. DSM-IV diagnostic of autism was based on parents' interview and child observation. Results: 32 children were included in the study. Results show that 53.1% of the ASD child had ADHD symptoms enough to fulfill DSM-IV diagnostic criteria, whereas 56.9% did not fulfill DSM- IV criteria for ADHD. Conclusion: Results suggest a high frequency of ADHD symptoms in ASD patients. Elucidating if we are facing a comorbity or an autism distinct phenotype can contribute for a more adjusted pharmacotherapy approach for these children.

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Pondé, M. P., Novaes, C. M., & Losapio, M. F. (2010). Frequency of symptoms of attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder in autistic children. Arquivos de Neuro-Psiquiatria, 68(1), 103–106. https://doi.org/10.1590/S0004-282X2010000100022

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