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The neuropsychology of conduct disorder

  • Terrie E. Moffitt (a1)

This article reviews evidence from neuropsychological tests that brain dysfunction is a correlate of conduct disorder. Most studies report consistent findings of differential neuropsychological deficits for antisocial samples in verbal and “executive” functions. Neuropsychological measures are related to some of the best indicators of poor outcome for children with conduct symptoms, such as early onset, stability across time, hyperactive symptoms, and aggressiveness. Neuropsychological tests statistically predict variance in antisocial behavior independently of appropriate control variables. This article argues that neuropsychological variables warrant further study as possible causal factors for conduct disorder and presents one developmental perspective on how neuropsychological problems might contribute risk for conduct disorder.

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