Screening for attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder in a select sample of injured and uninjured pediatric patients

J Pediatr Surg. 2009 Apr;44(4):743-8. doi: 10.1016/j.jpedsurg.2008.08.003.


Purpose: Injury is the leading cause of morbidity and mortality to children. The purpose of this study is to compare attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) screening results in a select group of injured pediatric patients to noninjured patients.

Methods: Parents of patients 6 to 12 years of age were enrolled in the study. Patients were either admitted for specific injury mechanisms (n = 133) or appendicitis (n = 157). Demographic and medical data were collected, and an ADHD screening tool was administered. Logistic regression models were used to compare screening results between groups.

Results: The injured patient group was 3.25 times more likely to screen positive for ADHD (odds ratio, 3.25; 95% confidence interval, 1.57-6.72; P = .002) than the appendicitis group. Among the injured patients who screened positive for ADHD, only 34.0% reported currently receiving treatment.

Conclusions: Our results suggest that pediatric patients with certain injury mechanisms may warrant screening and referral for ADHD. Appropriate identification and treatment of undiagnosed ADHD may reduce the burden of injury recidivism. Screening and referral for ADHD within a trauma service should be evaluated for effectiveness as an injury prevention initiative.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study

MeSH terms

  • Age Distribution
  • Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity / diagnosis*
  • Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity / epidemiology*
  • Child
  • Cohort Studies
  • Confidence Intervals
  • Emergency Service, Hospital / statistics & numerical data
  • Female
  • Follow-Up Studies
  • Hospitals, Pediatric
  • Humans
  • Incidence
  • Male
  • Mass Screening / methods*
  • Odds Ratio
  • Probability
  • Reference Values
  • Risk Assessment
  • Sampling Studies
  • Severity of Illness Index
  • Sex Distribution
  • United States / epidemiology
  • Wounds and Injuries / epidemiology*
  • Wounds and Injuries / prevention & control