Do Symptoms of ADHD at Ages 7 and 10 Predict Academic Outcome at Age 16 in the General Population?
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© 2012 SAGE Publications. Objective: To examine the value of the Conners 10-item scale to predict academic outcomes at age 16 years in schoolchildren aged 7 and 10 years. Method: A cohort study of N = 544 children in a municipality of Stockholm County was conducted. Using the parent and teacher version of the Conners 10-item scale, 7- and 10-year-olds were screened for ADHD symptoms and followed-up for school outcome at age 16 years. Results: The best predictors for school outcome at age 16 years were the Conners items, “child failing to finish tasks” and “being inattentive, easily distracted,” with a high specificity (90%-97%) but low sensitivity (18%-39%). Conclusion: This study indicates a considerable association between certain symptoms of inattentiveness in young schoolchildren and academic underachievement at age 16 years. Screening for one to two symptoms of inattention in schoolchildren identifies 30% to 40% of participants at risk for later poor school attainment.
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