Verbal Memory Function in Intellectually Well-Functioning Adults With ADHD: Relations to Working Memory and Response Inhibition

J Atten Disord. 2019 Aug;23(10):1188-1198. doi: 10.1177/1087054715580842. Epub 2015 Apr 22.


Objective: To investigate verbal memory function with relation to working memory (WM) and response inhibition (RI) in adults with ADHD. Method: Verbal memory function was assessed by the California Verbal Learning Test-Second Edition (CVLT-II), WM by the Paced Serial Addition Test, and RI by the Color-Word Interference Test from Delis-Kaplan Executive Function System in a sample of adults with normal to high intellectual function (IQ). Results: The ADHD group (n = 74) obtained lower scores than controls on measures of learning, recall, and immediate memory (CVLT-II). WM and RI explained a substantial part of verbal memory performance in both groups. A group to executive function (EF) interaction effect was identified for the total number of intrusions and false positive responses on the CVLT-II recognition trial. Conclusion: Verbal memory performance only partially overlaps with EF in intellectually well-functioning adults with ADHD. Both EF and verbal memory function should be assessed as part of a neuropsychological evaluation of adults with ADHD. (J. of Att. Dis. XXXX; XX(X) XX-XX).

Keywords: ADHD; CVLT-II; executive function; neuropsychology; response inhibition; verbal memory; working memory.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity*
  • Executive Function
  • Humans
  • Memory, Short-Term*
  • Neuropsychological Tests
  • Verbal Learning