Title ADHD Symptomatology, Executive Function and Cognitive Performance Differences between Family Foster Care and Control Group in ADHD-Diagnosed Children
Authors PEÑARRUBIA SÁNCHEZ, MARÍA GRACIA, Navarro-Soria, Ignasi , Palacios, Jesus , FENOLLAR CORTÉS, JAVIER
External publication No
Means Children-Basel
Scope Article
Nature Científica
JCR Quartile 2
Area International
Publication date 01/05/2021
ISI 000653614500001
DOI 10.3390/children8050405
Abstract Children in foster care have a high prevalence of attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) diagnosis, together with other difficulties in inattentive/hyperactive behaviors, executive and cognitive processes. Early exposure to adversity is a risk factor for developing ADHD via neurodevelopmental pathways. The goal of this research is (a) to study the cognitive and executive performance and inattentive/hyperactive behavior of ADHD-diagnosed children living in foster families in Spain, and (b) to analyze the role of placement variables in their performance. The sample was composed of 102 ADHD-diagnosed children aged 6- to 12-years-old, divided into two groups: 59 children living with non-relative foster families and 43 children not involved with protection services. Children\'s executive function-inhibition, working memory, flexibility, attention, intellectual capacity, verbal comprehension, perceptive reasoning, working memory and processing speed were assessed using objective testing measures. At the same time, parents and teachers reported on children\'s inattentive, hyperactive and impulsive behaviors. Children in foster care obtained lower scores in the general ability index than the control group after controlling the age at assessment. However, no differences were found in executive processes. Regarding placement factors, children with shorter exposure to adversities in their birth families and more time in foster care showed better executive performance. Professionals should consider the placement history of children in foster care and its influence on their symptomatology and cognitive capacities.
Keywords attention deficit and hyperactivity disorder (ADHD); executive function; intellectual capacity; foster care; placement variables
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