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ADHD can overlap with other developmental disorders, writes Professor Amanda Kirby.
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a heterogeneous disorder affecting an estimated 5 per cent of school age children in the UK.1 There are three elements: inattention, hyperactivity and impulsivity (see box).2
For a diagnosis of ADHD, there are several criteria: symptoms of hyperactivity, impulsivity and/or inattention should meet the diagnostic criteria in DSM-IV or ICD-10 (hyperkinetic disorder);3,4 they should be associated with at least moderate psychological, social and/or educational or occupational impairment based on interview and/or direct observation in multiple settings; they must also be pervasive, occurring in two or more important settings.
Distinguishing the disorder
Children with ADHD have difficulties with attention and concentration in more than one setting and over a period of …