Developmental coordination disorder in Swedish 7-year-old children

J Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 1999 Jul;38(7):820-8. doi: 10.1097/00004583-199907000-00011.


Objective: To estimate the prevalence, comorbidity, and outcome in developmental coordination disorder (DCD).

Method: In this population study of 7-year-olds undergoing individual examination plus teacher and parent interviews, children were followed up at ages 8, 9, and 10 years.

Results: Severe DCD occurred in 4.9% and moderate DCD in another 8.6%. Boy-girl ratios ranged from 4:1 to 7:1. Children with severe and moderate DCD did not differ from each other on any measure, but both groups were clearly separated from children without DCD with respect to associated attention deficit symptoms. Asperger's disorder symptoms, school dysfunction scores, and outcome. Approximately half of all children with DCD had moderate to severe symptoms of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

Conclusions: DCD is a common problem, and it is strongly associated with ADHD symptoms. A diagnosis of DCD at age 7 years predicts DCD at age 8 years and restricted reading comprehension at age 10 years. Clinicians need to acquaint themselves with DCD and its comorbidity so that they can provide better services to affected children.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity / diagnosis
  • Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity / epidemiology*
  • Child
  • Child Development Disorders, Pervasive / diagnosis
  • Child Development Disorders, Pervasive / epidemiology
  • Comorbidity
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Learning Disabilities / epidemiology*
  • Longitudinal Studies
  • Male
  • Motor Skills Disorders / diagnosis
  • Motor Skills Disorders / epidemiology*
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Observer Variation
  • Predictive Value of Tests
  • Reading
  • Sampling Studies
  • Sex Distribution
  • Sweden / epidemiology