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Relative Influence of Conduct Problems and Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder in the Development of Adolescent Psychopathy

NCJ Number
Aggression and Violent Behavior Volume: 17 Issue: 6 Dated: November/December 2012 Pages: 575-580
Cary Stacy Smith; Li-Ching Hung
Date Published
December 2012
6 pages
This study examined whether conduct problems and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder can be significant predictors of adolescent psychopathy.
An in depth literature review was conducted into the relative influence of conduct problems and attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder in the development of child/adolescent psychopathy. Lynam (1996) wrote that children/adolescents exhibiting behaviors of both were 'fledgling psychopaths;' however, recent evidence suggests that if youth with comorbid conduct problems and ADHD exhibit a persistent form of antisocial and/or psychopathic behavior, the cause is primarily due to the levels of conduct problems, not the influence of ADHD. This article looks at the three perspectives regarding the development of psychopathy: (1) Conduct Problem Mediation, (2) the Independent Position, and (3) the Comorbid Subtype. The studies examining the three perspectives found that the Conduct Problem Mediation, not the Comorbid Subtype, was the most important in the development of psychopathy. (Published Abstract)