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Prevalence of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder among urban school children

Rajeshwari Mannapur, Govindaraj Munirathnam, Mallapa Hyarada, Siva Saranappa Sri Bylagoudar.

Background: Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is one of the most common childhood onset psychiatric disorders. Prevalence among school children varies from 1% to 20%.Western literature on this disorder has grown but in India only few studies have been done. Evaluation of prevalence of ADHD in school age children can help clinicians to consider the diagnosis of ADHD. Early intervention minimizes negative impact of this disorder. The main objective is to study the prevalence of ADHD among urban school going children.
Methods: Nine hundred and ninety seven (540 males and 457 females) school children (aged between 6 to 12 years) from 3 government aided English medium schools of Bengaluru were selected for the study. Teachers and parents of these children were asked to complete a ten item Conner‘s index questionnaire for each of these children. Those with the scores of >15 were considered positive. Parents of children whose scores were positive for ADHD were interviewed by a psychiatrist and ADHD was diagnosed based on DSM-IV diagnostic criteria.
Results: 23 (2.3%) children were diagnosed to have ADHD. Of 23 children, 18 (78.26%) were boys and 5 (21.74%) were girls. The mean age of boys with ADHD was 10.2 years and the mean age of girls with ADHD was 7.6years. The male to female ratio was 3.6:1.
Conclusions: ADHD is one of the prevalent psychiatric disorders in school children. ADHD symptoms are frequently reported by teachers and parents by means of DSM-IV based questionnaire. This study recommends diagnosis and treatment of school children with ADHD.

Key words: Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, Conner’s index questionnaire, School children

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Journal of Behavioral Health


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