Skip to content

ADHD Comorbidities

Handbook for ADHD Complications in Children and Adults

Edited by Thomas E. Brown, Ph.D.

  • ISBN 978-1-58562-158-3
  • Item #62158

View Pricing

List Price

APA Members

20% off

APA Resident-Fellow Members

25% off

Buying In Canada or Europe?


Many books address various aspects of ADHD—but ADHD Comorbidities: Handbook for ADHD Complications in Children and Adults is the only one that covers the multiple ways in which ADHD is complicated by other psychiatric and learning disorders in both children and adults. It features comprehensive, research-based information on the condition and its full range of comorbidities, from mood disorders to developmental coordination disorder, written by researcher-clinicians familiar with the complications that these additional disorders pose. The authors summarize in accessible language what is currently known about ADHD and its comorbidities from preschool age to adulthood, describing how ADHD produces different profiles at different stages of development.

The book offers a new paradigm for understanding ADHD, viewing it not as a simple behavior disorder but as a complex developmental impairment of executive functions in the brain. In describing combinations of disorders in various age groups, this effective guide shows that significant impairments can occur in adolescence and adulthood, when individuals face increased demands for self-management. And because adults with ADHD are likely to have at least one additional psychiatric disorder at some point in their lives, this handbook also describes how to adjust treatment strategies for both ADHD and additional disorders to reduce the impairments resulting from comorbidity. Among the book's features:

  • It reviews aspects of ADHD not only for elementary-school children, adolescents, and adults but also for preschoolers, giving ADHD developmental context by describing how symptoms in preschool years differ from those in older children
  • Eleven chapters offer practical clinical help for patients whose ADHD appears in combination with other disorders, including aggression, mood disorders, obsessive/compulsive disorders, substance abuse, Tourette syndrome, and the autistic/Asperger's disorder spectrum.
  • It presents guidelines for assessing and treating complicated ADHD, including psychopharmacological treatment, psychosocial treatment, cognitive therapy, and tailoring treatment to individuals and their families.
  • It provides guidance on adapting and adjusting medications and other interventions to optimize treatment effects for the wide diversity of complex cases that embody ADHD.
  • It contains useful information about how to discern other disorders when the chief complaint suggests ADHD—and how to detect ADHD when the patient's presentation has been modified by the presence of other disorders.

With its comprehensive summaries of research and wealth of clinical guidance, this handbook clearly shows how attentional disorders are related to other conditions and how patients with these more complex variants of ADD can be more effectively recognized and treated.


  • Contributors
  • Foreword
  • Preface
  • Acknowledgments
  • Part I: Attention Deficit Disorders in Developmental Contexts

  • Chapter 1. Developmental complexities of attentional disorders
  • Chapter 2. Genetics of ADHD
  • Chapter 3. ADHD in preschool children
  • Chapter 4. ADHD in elementary school children
  • Chapter 5. ADHD in adolescents
  • Chapter 6. ADHD in adults
  • Part II: Attention Deficit Disorders with Specific Comorbidities

  • Chapter 7. ADHD with mood disorders
  • Chapter 8. ADHD with anxiety disorders
  • Chapter 9. ADHD with oppositionality and aggression
  • Chapter 10. ADHD with obsessive-compulsive disorder
  • Chapter 11. ADHD with language and/or learning disorders in children and adolescents
  • Chapter 12. ADHD and learning disabilities in adults: overlap with executive dysfunction
  • Chapter 13. ADHD with substance use disorders
  • Chapter 14. ADHD with autism spectrum disorders
  • Chapter 15. ADHD with sleep/arousal disturbances
  • Chapter 16. ADHD with tourette syndrome
  • Chapter 17. ADHD with developmental coordination disorder
  • Part III: Assessment and Interventions for Complicated Attention Deficit Disorders

  • Chapter 18. Assessment of ADHD and comorbidities
  • Chapter 19. Pharmacotherapy of ADHD and comorbidities
  • Chapter 20. Psychosocial interventions for ADHD and comorbidities
  • Chapter 21. Cognitive therapy for adults with ADHD
  • Chapter 22. Tailoring treatments for individuals with ADHD and their families
  • Index


    Howard Abikoff, Ph.D.
    Thomas E. Brown, Ph.D.
    Gabrielle A. Carlson, M.D.
    Martha Bridge Denckla, M.D.
    George J. DuPaul, Ph.D.
    Daniel A. Geller, M.B.B.S., F.R.A.C.P.
    Christopher Gillberg, M.D., Ph.D.
    Laurence L. Greenhill, M.D.
    Jeffrey M. Halperin, Ph.D.
    Lily Hechtman, M.D., F.R.C.P.
    Stephen P. Hinshaw, Ph.D.
    James J. Hudziak, M.D.
    Peter S. Jensen, M.D.
    Bjorn Kadesjo, M.D., Ph.D.
    James F. Leckman, M.D.
    Stephen P. McDermott, M.D.
    Stephanie E. Meyer, Ph.D.
    Carlin J. Miller, Ph.D.
    Edward J. Modestino, M.Phil.
    Jeffrey H. Newcorn, M.D.
    Judith A. Owens, M.D., M.P.H.
    Kelly Posner, Ph.D.
    Thomas J. Power, Ph.D.
    Aliza W. Pressman, M.A.
    Jefferson B. Prince, M.D.
    Donald M. Quinlan, Ph.D.
    David C. Rettew, M.D.
    Arthur L. Robin, Ph.D.
    Paramala J. Santosh, M.B.B.S., Dip.N.B.
    M.R.C.Psych., M.D.
    Lawrence Scahill, M.S.N., Ph.D.
    Denis G. Sukhodolsky, Ph.D.
    Rosemary Tannock, Ph.D.
    Jeanette Wasserstein, Ph.D.
    Timothy E. Wilens, M.D.

About the Authors

Thomas E. Brown, Ph.D., is Associate Director at the Yale Clinic for Attention and Related Disorders, and Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at Yale University School of Medicine in New Haven, Connecticut.

Three approaches have been taken so far in reducing the heterogeneity of ADHD cases. The first, based on subtyping as in the DSM-IV, has largely failed to reveal clinically or scientifically meaningful differences. The second, based on etiology, is promising but of little clinical value at the moment. The third approach having by far the greatest clinical and scientific utility has been using comorbidity. As this book attests, using comorbidity to better understand ADHD has been an approach yielding reams of valuable information about the life course and forms of impairments likely to be associated with ADHD, the types of treatments that need to be used or adjustments to them for various comorbidities, and even the likely response to traditional ADHD treatments. This is the most up-to-date book on this topic currently available and richly rewards the reader, whether clinician, scientist, or student, with its substantial breadth of coverage and detail.—Russell A. Barkley, Ph.D., Clinical Professor, Medical University of South Carolina (Charleston) and Research Professor, SUNY Upstate Medical University (Syracuse)

This book offers a rich compendium of information about what is currently known about ADHD and how it can be most effectively treated in all its complexities.—From the Foreword, F. Xavier Castellanos, M.D., New York University Child Study Center and Nathan Kline Institute for Psychiatric Research

Every conceivable psychiatric comorbidity is covered, by experts in each. Specific chapters are devoted to assessment of ADHD and comorbid disorders and the variety of treatments—pharmacotherapy, psychosocial interventions, cognitive therapy for adults, and tailoring treatment to best fit each person and family. Given the high prevalence of ADHD, this volume should be on every clinician's shelf.—Mina K. Dulcan, M.D., Osterman Prof Child Psychiatry, Children's Mem Hosp; Head, Child Psychiatry, Children's Mem Hosp & Northwestern Mem Hosp; Head, Child Psychiatry, Northwestern Univ School of Med

In accessible language, more than 30 researcher-clinician contributors summarize how to recognize ADHD and its comorbidities at various stages of development, from preschool age to adolescence to adulthood. Clinician will find practical help-and acquire valuable guidance on tailoring medications and other interventions to optimize treatment outcomes for patients of all ages with complex cases of ADHD.—ATTENTION Magazine, 2/1/2009

It is a comprehensive and exhaustive volume, with ample references, suggestions for further readings, and even useful web sites. While the information can be overwhelming, the variety of therapeutic responses to the syndrome—from cognitive and behavioral therapy to appropriate medication—offer a glimmer of hope for concerned teachers and beleaguered family members.—Education, 2/1/2009

This handbook makes an important contribution to the field by highlighting the developmental and genetically mediated nature of ADHD, its potential influences on other psychopathology into adulthood, empirical findings regarding the nature of virtually all ADHD comorbidities, and the implications for and best practices in assessment.—Will H. Canu, Journal of Attention Disorders, 2/1/2009

Related Products

Become an APA Member
Join Now