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22-05-2020 | Uitgave 8/2020

Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology 8/2020

Clarifying ADHD and Sluggish Cognitive Tempo Item Relations with Impairment: A Network Analysis

Tijdschrift:
Research on Child and Adolescent Psychopathology > Uitgave 8/2020
Auteurs:
Patrick K. Goh, Michelle M. Martel, Russell A. Barkley
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Electronic supplementary material

The online version of this article (https://​doi.​org/​10.​1007/​s10802-020-00655-2) contains supplementary material, which is available to authorized users.

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Abstract

Despite the pervasive nature of various forms of impairment associated with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), the precise nature of their associations with ADHD and related sluggish cognitive tempo (SCT), particularly at the heterogeneous item level, remains ambiguous. Using innovative network analysis techniques, we sought to identify and examine the concurrent validity of ADHD and SCT bridge items (i.e., those demonstrating the most robust relations with various forms of impairment) with respect to Overall, Home-School, and Community-Leisure impairment domains. Parents of a nationally representative sample of 1742 children (50.17% male) aged 6–17 years completed rating scales of ADHD, SCT, and impairment. Assessment of Bridge Expected Influence suggested eight bridge items primarily from impulsive and Task Completion (i.e., overlapping SCT and inattentive) domains that demonstrated relations with impairment in school performance, completing chores at home, interacting with family members, following rules, and playing sports. Sum scores only including bridge items exhibited relations with Overall, Home-School, and Community-Leisure impairment domains comparable to that of sum scores including all items. Bridge impairment areas were generally consistent across “Childhood” (6–11 years) and “Adolescence” (12–17 years). Problems listening and slowness emerged as bridge items in Childhood, whereas difficulties following through on instructions, problems waiting one’s turn, and social withdrawal emerged in Adolescence. Given the comparable validity of ADHD- and SCT-related bridge items versus all items, bridge items, together, may be the most efficient indicators of impairment. Further clarification is needed across development to inform personalized assessment and intervention protocols that account for item-level heterogeneity in ADHD, SCT, and impairment phenotypes.

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