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Diagnostic validity of attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder: from phenomenology to neurobiology (I)
The diagnostic criteria for the attentional deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), were defined by the American Psychiatric Association in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders fourth version (DSM-IV) and World Health Organization in the ICD-10. The American Psychiatric Association used an internal validity analysis to select specific behavioral symptoms associated with the disorder and to build five cross-cultural criteria for its use in the categorical diagnosis. The DSM has been utilized for clinicians and researchers as a valid and stable approach since 1968. We did a systematic review of scientific literature in Spanish and English, aimed to identify the historical origin that supports ADHD as a psychiatric construct. This comprehensive review started exploring the concept of minimal brain dysfunction, hyperactivity, inattention, impulsivity since 1932 to 2011. This paper summarize all the DSM versions that include the definition of ADHD or its equivalent, and it point out the statistical and methodological approach implemented for defining ADHD as a valid epidemiological and psychometric construct. Finally the paper discusses some considerations and suggestions for the new versions of the manual.
Attentional deficit hyperactivity disorderDSMEpidemiological validityInternal consistencyNeuropediatríaNeuropsiquiatría