The influence of Generalized Anxiety Disorder on Executive Functions in children with ADHD

D Menghini, M Armando, M Calcagni, C Napolitano, P Pasqualetti, J A Sergeant, P Pani, S Vicari

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

The present study was aimed at verifying whether the presence of generalized anxiety disorder (GAD) affects executive functions in children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). Two groups of children with ADHD were selected for the study according to the presence or absence of GAD. The first group of 28 children with ADHD with GAD (mean age: 9 ± 1.2; males/females: 24/4) was matched for gender, age, IQ, psychiatric comorbidity with a second group of 29 children with ADHD without GAD (mean age: 8.8 ± 0.7; males/females: 26/3). The two groups with ADHD were compared to 28 typically developing children (mean age: 8.3 ± 1.3; males/females: 23/5) on different measures involving processes especially important in inhibitory control such as rule maintenance, stimulus detection, action selection and action execution. Our results indicated that, differently from children with ADHD with GAD, only the group with ADHD without GAD showed a deficit in inhibitory control. Comorbid subgroups should be differentiated, especially, to develop specific and efficient therapeutic interventions in ADHD.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)349-357
Number of pages9
JournalEuropean Archives of Psychiatry and Clinical Neuroscience
Volume268
Issue number4
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2018

Keywords

  • Adolescent
  • Anxiety Disorders/complications
  • Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity/complications
  • Child
  • Executive Function/physiology
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Inhibition (Psychology)
  • Male
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Psychiatric Status Rating Scales
  • Statistics, Nonparametric

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