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New findings could help explain why ADHD is often overlooked in girls

16 January 2019

For every girl with ADHD, there are three boys with the same diagnosis. But among adults, the gender ratio is more like 1:1. That’s a big discrepancy. So what’s going on? 

In 2017, Aja Louise Murray at the University of Cambridge and colleagues investigated possible predictors of childhood vs. later (adolescent/adult-onset) ADHD, and they found hints that girls tend to develop ADHD at a later age than boys.

Now a team that includes the same researchers has investigated this explicitly and in their paper in Developmental Science, they’ve confirmed it seems to be the case, which could partially explain the discrepancy in the ADHD gender ratio between children and adults. 

The researchers analysed data on 1,571 children living in Zurich, Switzerland, whose teachers used a standard scale to assess symptoms of inattention and also of hyperactivity/impulsivity every year from age 7 (when the children started school) through to age 15.

Read more in a new post by Emma Young on our Research Digest blog.

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