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Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder and adverse health outcomes

Joel T. Nigg

Clinical Psychology Review

Volume 33, Issue 2, March 2013, Pages 215–228



Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is defined by extreme levels of inattention–disorganization and/or hyperactivity–impulsivity. In DSM-IV, the diagnostic criteria required impairment in social, academic, or occupational functioning. With DSM-5 publication imminent in 2013, further evaluation of impairment in ADHD is timely. This article reviews the current state of knowledge on health-related impairments of ADHD, including smoking, drug abuse, accidental injury, sleep, obesity, hypertension, diabetes, and suicidal behavior. It concludes by suggesting the need for new avenues of research on mechanisms of association and the potential for ADHD to be an early warning sign for secondary prevention of some poor health outcomes.



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