The Utility of CNS Vital Signs as an Indicator of Adult Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder

ASU Author/Contributor (non-ASU co-authors, if there are any, appear on document)
Jared F. Cook (Creator)
Appalachian State University (ASU )
Web Site:
Will Canu

Abstract: Three to five percent of adults are believed to suffer from Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), though the validity of this prevalence is uncertain. One potential tool for identifying ADHD is neurocognitive testing. The Central Nervous System Vital Signs (CNSVS) is a brief battery of computerized neurocognitive tests with putative value assessing ADHD. Using a community-derived sample of adults (18 to 85 years), this study examines whether the CNSVS differentiates individuals with clinically elevated ADHD symptoms from those with elevated depression or anxiety, and others with non-elevated scores. Scores on the CNSVS were compared to self report measures of ADHD, depression, and anxiety. The CNSVS did not differentiate between ADHD, depression, anxiety, and control groups. An exploratory analysis showed a trend level difference between groups when restricting the age of participants to 40 years or younger, ? = .767, F (3, 256) = 1.295, p = .086; however, the ADHD-U group fared better than peers in comparison groups on two outcome variables. The findings are consistent with prior research suggesting that measures of neurocognitive deficits in ADHD groups inconsistently provide diagnostic certainty, and indicate that the CNSVS battery does not differentiate ADHD from other groups in an adult community sample.

Additional Information

Cook, J.F. (2010). The Utility of CNS Vital Signs as an Indicator of Adult Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder. Unpublished master’s thesis. Appalachian State University, Boone, NC.
Language: English
Date: 2010
Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder, CNS Vital Signs, Neurocognitive Testing

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