Perceptual, motor and attentional deficits in seven-year-old children. Neurological screening aspects

Acta Paediatr Scand. 1983 Jan;72(1):119-24. doi: 10.1111/j.1651-2227.1983.tb09675.x.


In an extensive neuropsychiatric study of seven-year-old children, operational criteria for diagnosing minimal brain dysfunction (MBD) syndrome were used. Detailed behavioural assessment and meticulous neurological examination provided the basis for the MBD diagnosis. The time-consuming specialist examination by the child neurologist was considered too sophisticated for use in everyday clinical practice. Therefore, the results obtained at a short neurodevelopmental screening assessment performed by a child psychiatrist were analysed with the aim of finding a limited set of neurological examination items with high discriminating capacity detecting for MBD syndromes. A set of six such items (diadochokinesis, hopping on one leg, standing on one leg, cutting out a paper circle, associated movements when walking on lateral sides of feet and the labyrinth test of the WISC) produced a minimal rate of misclassified cases. It is argued that this discriminant set may be useful in everyday child psychiatric and pediatric assessment of children who raise suspicion of suffering from MBD.

MeSH terms

  • Attention
  • Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity / diagnosis
  • Attention Deficit Disorder with Hyperactivity / epidemiology*
  • Child
  • Child Behavior Disorders / diagnosis
  • Child Behavior Disorders / epidemiology*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Mass Screening / methods
  • Motor Skills*
  • Perceptual Disorders / diagnosis
  • Perceptual Disorders / epidemiology*