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Parent-reported attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder and subtypes of conduct disorder as risk factor of recidivism in detained male adolescents

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  15 April 2020

O. Colins*
Curium, Leiden University Medical Center, Endegeesterstraatweg 27, 2342 AKOegstgeest, The Netherlands
R. Vermeiren
Curium, Leiden University Medical Center, Endegeesterstraatweg 27, 2342 AKOegstgeest, The Netherlands VU University Medical Center, Biesbosch 67, 1115 HG Duivendrecht, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
P. Vahl
Curium, Leiden University Medical Center, Endegeesterstraatweg 27, 2342 AKOegstgeest, The Netherlands
M. Markus
Curium, Leiden University Medical Center, Endegeesterstraatweg 27, 2342 AKOegstgeest, The Netherlands
E. Broekaert
Ghent University, Faculty of Psychology and Educational Sciences, Department of Special Education, H. Dunantlaan 2, 9000Ghent, Belgium
T. Doreleijers
VU University Medical Center, Biesbosch 67, 1115 HG Duivendrecht, Amsterdam, The Netherlands
*Corresponding author. Tel.: +31 715159600; fax: +31 715171414. E-mail address: (O. Colins).
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Parents are considered to be crucial informants in child psychiatry, particularly for disorders in which age of onset is included in the diagnostic criteria. In detained adolescents, however, parents all too often are difficult to reach or reluctant to cooperate. The clinical relevance of gathering parental information in this context should therefore be demonstrated. This study examines if parent reports of attention-deficit-hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and age of onset subtypes of conduct disorder (CD) predict official criminal recidivism.


Participants were 110 detained male adolescents from all three Youth Detention Centers in Flanders. Between January 2005 and February 2007, both youth and a parent were interviewed with the Diagnostic Interview Schedule for Children Version IV. Two to 4years later, information on criminal recidivism was retrieved.


Youth self-reported ADHD and CD (subtypes) were not related with recidivism. Parent-reported ADHD, CD and childhood-onset CD predicted serious property recidivism, while parent-reported adolescent-onset CD predicted future violent arrests. In reverse, childhood-onset CD as reported by parents was negatively associated with violent recidivism.


Obtaining parental diagnostic information in delinquent adolescents is crucial for predicting recidivism. This finding emphasizes the need of including parents when studying mental disorder in detained adolescents.

Original articles
Copyright © Elsevier Masson SAS 2012

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