Article

Relations Between Continuous Performance Test Performance Measures and ADHD Behaviors

Duke University, Durham, North Carolina, United States
Journal of Abnormal Child Psychology (Impact Factor: 3.48). 11/2003; 31(5):543-54. DOI: 10.1023/A:1025405216339
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT

The Conners' Continuous Performance Test (CPT) is a neuropsychological task that has repeatedly been shown to differentiate ADHD from normal groups. Several variables may be derived from the Conners' CPT including errors of omission and commission, mean hit reaction time(RT), mean hit RT standard error, d', and beta. What each CPT parameter actually assesses has largely been based upon clinical assumptions and the face validity of each measure (e.g., omission errors measure inattention, commission errors measure impulsivity). This study attempts to examine relations between various CPT variables and phenotypic behaviors so as to better understand the various CPT variables. An epidemiological sample of 817 children was administered the Conners' CPT. Diagnostic interviews were conducted with parents to determine ADHD symptom profiles for all children. Children diagnosed with ADHD had more variable RTs, made more errors of commission and omission, and demonstrated poorer perceptual sensitivity than nondiagnosed children. Regarding specific symptoms, generalized estimating equations (GEE) and ANCOVAs were conducted to determine specific relationships between the 18 DSM-IV ADHD symptoms and 6 CPT parameters. CPT performance measures demonstrated significant relationships to ADHD symptoms but did not demonstrate symptom domain specificity according to a priori assumptions. Overall performance on the two signal detection measures, d' and beta, was highly related to all ADHD symptoms across symptom domains. Further, increased variability in RTs over time was related to most ADHD symptoms. Finally, it appears that at least 1 CPT variable, mean hit RT, is minimally related to ADHD symptoms as a whole, but does demonstrate some specificity in its link with symptoms of hyperactivity.

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Available from: Elizabeth Jane Costello, Mar 31, 2015
    • "We first examined whether individuals who exerted greater listening effort (mean taskevoked pupil response) exhibited greater vigilance on a behavioral measure of reaction time (RT) variability that was obtained from a standardized continuous performance test (CPT). In particular, previous research has demonstrated that RTs in response to changing interstimulus intervals (ISIs) on the CPT are more variable with increasing distractibility and with attention deficit disorders (Advokat, Martino, Hill, & Gouvier, 2007;Epstein et al., 2003). Secondly, we predicted that individuals who exhibited greater listening effort (larger pupil responses) would demonstrate auditory-and attention-related neural activity to a greater degree in response to unexpected transitions in experimental epochs (i.e., quiet rest, rest with background noise, and word-in-noise recognition). "
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    • "On the AULA, children do sustained attention and response inhibition exercises while various auditory and visual distractors are presented. On CPTs – whether sustained attention/vigilance or sustained attention/inhibition – children with attention deficits exhibit: longer and more variable reaction times, and lower sensitivity (d') (Epstein et al., 2003; Hooks, Milich, & Pugzles-Lorch, 1994; Losier, McGrath, & Klein, 1996; Oades, 2000; Stins et al., 2005; Swaab- Barneveld et al., 2000) than children with typical development. Children with attention deficit make more omission errors and commission only when it comes to sustained attention/inhibition. "
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    • "Moreover, disrupted impulse control has been observed in psychiatric disorders such as attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (Epstein et al., 2003, 2006), antisocial or borderline personality disorders (Dougherty et al., 1999; Swann et al., 2009a), and bipolar disorder (Swann et al., 2003, 2009b). Thus, elucidating the neural basis of impulse control would be an important contribution to modern society. "
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