Thesis Title

Differential Diagnosis of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder and Bipolar Disorder in Children: Can Clinicians Differentiate?

Date of Graduation

Fall 2003

Degree

Master of Science in Psychology

Department

Psychology

Committee Chair

David Lutz

Subject Categories

Psychology

Abstract

Early onset bipolar disorder has only recently begun to be recognized as a valid diagnosis. Diagnostic and comorbidity issues make differential diagnosis in children problematic. The current project addressed whether clinicians can accurately differentiate ADHD from Bipolar Disorder in children. Using a 2 (gender) x 4 (type of disorder) design, 206 members of the APA (American Psychological Association) who reported their major field or major field of interest was clinical child psychology were asked to read 1 of 8 vignettes and give a 5-axis diagnosis. Binomial analyses revealed that clinicians were successful at differentiating Bipolar Disorder from ADHD. However, males were more likely to be correctly identified as having Bipolar Disorder. Females were less likely to be identified correctly as having Bipolar Disorder, and more likely to be incorrectly identified as having ADHD.

Copyright

© Jessica A Heavin

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Dissertation/Thesis

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