Neuropsychological characteristics of juvenile delinquency.
ABSTRACT Knowledge of the neuropsychological characteristics related to JD and other behavioral disturbances in childhood is an important aspect of pediatric care. Referral of patients with developing behavioral problems for neuropsychological evaluation may assist pediatricians with identifying neuropsychological risk factors for JD, clarifying differential diagnostic questions, providing information for the nature of intervention efforts, and providing useful predictive tools for long-term planning and outcome. Thus, referrals for neuropsychological evaluation should not occur solely within the context of a patient with known central nervous system compromise. Neuropsychological results may be of benefit with disorders wherein the precise brain-behavior relationship is unclear, such as with JD. Once a child's neuropsychological characteristics are known and evaluated from a behavioral risk standpoint, pediatricians will have information that is pivotal to asserting recommendations for modifications to the home and school environments, as well as for direct intervention and treatment. The direction of future neuropsychological research includes the early identification of children and adolescents with potential behavioral disturbance. Accurate early differential diagnosis and knowledge of neuropsychological risk factors help to achieve this goal. Neuropsychological research and knowledge assist with understanding the complexities of interactions between environmental vulnerabilities and neuropsychological risk factors, and can provide useful predictive and preventative information for pediatricians.
Article: Prevalencia de trastornos psiquiátricos en adolescentes infractores de ley. Estudio caso-control Prevalence of psychiatric disorder among juvenile offerders. Case-control study[show abstract] [hide abstract]
ABSTRACT: Introduction: The juvenile delinquency has grown worldwide in alarming form in the last time, a multicausality is recognized in the origin of this phenomenon, but it becomes necessary to identify the importance of each one of this causes, and its specific impact in the time. Objective: To identify individual, educational and family factors associated with criminal conduct in a sample of adolescent offenders. Method: Observational study, crossectional, of case-control. From a universe of adolescents between 12 years old and 17 years with 11 months and 30 days, offenders, imprisoned in penal or protection institutions, a convenience sample of 100 adolescents was chosen, which was equalled in gender, age range, and socioeconomic level with a control group of the same size. To both groups a battery of instruments, DISC IV, WISC-R or WAIS, and the Family History Screen, was applied. Results: During the 12 months prior to the study 64% of the offenders and 18% of the controls presented a psychiatric diagnosis. Among the offenders the most prevalent disorder were conduct disorder (46.99%), abuse of alcohol (26%) and dependence of other substances (18%); among the control group the most prevalent were attentional deficit disorder (5%) and conduct disorder (5%). There are statically significant differences between both groups when measuring the intellectual level of functiong, 31% of the offenders were in the rank of borderline and 34% of controls were classified as low average. Conclusions: Lower intellectual capacity, school failures, number of sexual partners and conduct disorder were the variables that better predicted inclusion in the group of juvenile offenders.Revista Chilena de Neuro-Psiquiatria 01/2010; 47(3):190-200.