A longitudinal investigation of parental ratings and performance metrics for executive functioning and symptom severity in clinically referred youth with ADHD

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Abstract

There remains a knowledge gap concerning the persistence of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) over the longer term. The current study aimed to investigate the change in parent-rated, and performance-based metrics of executive functioning (EF) and the relationship between these EF metrics and ADHD symptoms in individuals with ADHD from childhood/adolescence to young adulthood. This was done by examining possible improvements in parent-rated EF and performance-based measures of inattention and inhibition over a three-year interval and their relationship to ADHD outcomes in 137 clinically referred youth with ADHD (mean age = 12.4 years, SD = 3.1). Participants’ parents completed the Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function (BRIEF) and the Swanson-Nolan-Pelham Scale at baseline and follow-up. Participants completed the Conners’ Continuous Performance Test, Version II (CPT II) at baseline and follow-up. Statistical analyses were performed with Linear Mixed Models. The sex- and age-standardized measures Commission and Hit reaction time (RT) subscales of the CPT II and parent-rated metacognitive, and behavior regulation composites of the BRIEF were largely stable between measuring points. CPT Omissions, Hit RT standard error (reaction time variability), and parent-rated ADHD symptom scores improved slightly. BRIEF composites and reaction time variability were related to ADHD symptoms using longitudinal data. Overall, behavioral aspects of EF, as observed by parents in the home context, appear to play a significant role in the trajectory of childhood ADHD.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-13
JournalApplied Neuropsychology: Child
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 2022 Sep 20

Subject classification (UKÄ)

  • Psychiatry

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