Feminine Side of ADHD: Attention disorder has lasting impact on girls

10:11am, July 5, 2006

Although hyperactive behavior often abates during the teen years for girls with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder, many struggle with serious academic, emotional, and social problems related to that condition, a 5-year study finds.

Compared with teenage girls who had no psychiatric disorder, those with ADHD had difficulties that included delinquency, depression, substance abuse, eating disorders, poor mathematics and reading achievement, rejection by peers, and lack of planning skills, reports a team led by psychologist Stephen P. Hinshaw of the University of California, Berkeley.

"ADHD in girls is likely to yield continuing problems in adolescence, even though hyperactive symptoms may recede," Hinshaw says.

The new findings appear in the June Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology.

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