Emotional lability: The discriminative value in the diagnosis of attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder in adults
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© 2014 Elsevier Inc. All right reserved. Objective The aim of this study is to assess the discriminative value of emotional lability (EL) in the diagnosis of adults with ADHD.Methods A group of adults who met ADHD DSM-IV diagnostic criteria (n = 589), a clinical control group (n = 138) and a community control group (n = 98) were compared in EL scores. SCID-I, SCID-II and CAADID were used to select subjects. The specific subscale on EL of the Conners Adult ADHD Rating Scale (CAARS) was used to evaluate EL.Results An analysis of the covariance was carried out in order to explore the association between EL, ADHD and comorbidity. The group factor (ADHD, clinical or community group) and the comorbidity factor (presence or absence of other psychiatric disorders different from ADHD) showed to be significant on EL intensity (group: F = 81.78 p = 0.000; comorbidity: F = 25.48 p = 0.000). However, no significant differences were found in the group × comorbidity interaction (F = 1.006, p = 0.366). EL showed a sensitivity of 87.1% and a specificity of 46.6% in discriminating between ADHD patients and subjects with other psychiatric disorders.Conclusion EL is specifically related to ADHD and this association is not explained for the presence of other psychiatric disorders. The presence of comorbid disorders is only related to a major intensity of EL.