The association of ADHD symptoms to self-harm behaviours: a systematic PRISMA review

BMC Psychiatry. 2014 May 7;14:133. doi: 10.1186/1471-244X-14-133.

Abstract

Background: Self-harm is a major public health issue in young people worldwide and there are many challenges to its management and prevention. Numerous studies have indicated that ADHD is associated with completed suicides and other suicidal behaviours (i.e., suicidal attempt and ideation). However, significantly less is known about the association between ADHD and self-harm.

Method: This is the first review of the association between ADHD and self-harm. A systematic PRISMA review was conducted. Two internet-based bibliographic databases (Medline and CINAHL) were searched to access studies which examined to any degree the association between, specifically, ADHD and self-harm.

Results: Only 15 studies were identified which investigated the association between ADHD and self-harm and found evidence to support that ADHD is a potential risk factor for self-harm.

Conclusion: This association raises the need for more awareness of self-harm in individuals with symptoms of ADHD.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity / diagnosis*
  • Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity / epidemiology*
  • Humans
  • Risk Factors
  • Self-Injurious Behavior / diagnosis*
  • Self-Injurious Behavior / epidemiology*
  • Suicidal Ideation
  • Suicide, Attempted