Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology

, Volume 36, Issue 3, pp 385–398

Inattention/Overactivity Following Early Severe Institutional Deprivation: Presentation and Associations in Early Adolescence

Authors

    • Developmental Brain-Behaviour Unit, School of PsychologyUniversity of Southampton
    • MRC Social, Genetic and Developmental Psychiatry CentreInstitute of Psychiatry, King’s College London
    • SGDP Centre, Box PO.80Institute of Psychiatry, King’s College London
  • Edmund J. S. Sonuga-Barke
    • Developmental Brain-Behaviour Unit, School of PsychologyUniversity of Southampton
    • MRC Social, Genetic and Developmental Psychiatry CentreInstitute of Psychiatry, King’s College London
    • Child Study CenterNew York University
  • Jana M. Kreppner
    • MRC Social, Genetic and Developmental Psychiatry CentreInstitute of Psychiatry, King’s College London
  • Celia Beckett
    • MRC Social, Genetic and Developmental Psychiatry CentreInstitute of Psychiatry, King’s College London
  • Jenny Castle
    • MRC Social, Genetic and Developmental Psychiatry CentreInstitute of Psychiatry, King’s College London
  • Emma Colvert
    • MRC Social, Genetic and Developmental Psychiatry CentreInstitute of Psychiatry, King’s College London
  • Christine Groothues
    • MRC Social, Genetic and Developmental Psychiatry CentreInstitute of Psychiatry, King’s College London
  • Amanda Hawkins
    • MRC Social, Genetic and Developmental Psychiatry CentreInstitute of Psychiatry, King’s College London
  • Michael Rutter
    • MRC Social, Genetic and Developmental Psychiatry CentreInstitute of Psychiatry, King’s College London
Article

DOI: 10.1007/s10802-007-9185-5

Cite this article as:
Stevens, S.E., Sonuga-Barke, E.J.S., Kreppner, J.M. et al. J Abnorm Child Psychol (2008) 36: 385. doi:10.1007/s10802-007-9185-5

Abstract

The current study examined the persistence and phenotypic presentation of inattention/overactivity (I/O) into early adolescence, in a sample of institution reared (IR) children adopted from Romania before the age of 43 months. Total sample comprised 144 IR and 21 non-IR Romanian adoptees, and a comparison group of 52 within-UK adoptees, assessed at ages 6 and 11 years. I/O was rated using Rutter Scales completed by parents and teachers. I/O continued to be strongly associated with institutional deprivation, with continuities between ages 6 and 11 outcomes. There were higher rates of deprivation-related I/O in boys than girls, and I/O was strongly associated with conduct problems, disinhibited attachment and executive function but not IQ more generally, independently of gender. Deprivation-related I/O shares many common features with ADHD, despite its different etiology and putative developmental mechanisms. I/O is a persistent domain of impairment following early institutional deprivation of 6 months or more, suggesting there may be a possible pathway to impairment through some form of neuro-developmental programming during critical periods of early development.

Keywords

Inattention/overactivity Early deprivation Romanian institutional rearing International adoption

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007