Stop-Signal Task May Aid Assessment of Adult ADHD

Meta-analysis shows utility of stop-signal task for assessing inhibitory control deficits in adult ADHD
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Medically Reviewed By:
Mark Arredondo, M.D.

FRIDAY, June 16, 2023 (HealthDay News) -- The stop-signal task may be valuable for assessing inhibitory control deficits in adult attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), according to a systematic review and meta-analysis published online June 10 in Neuropsychology Review.

Daniel Senkowski, Ph.D., from Charité-Universitätsmedizin Berlin, and colleagues conducted a systematic literature review to understand neurocognitive deficits underlying adult ADHD. Analysis included 26 publications examining the stop-signal task in 883 adults with ADHD and 916 controls.

The researchers found reliable inhibitory control deficits expressed in prolonged stop-signal task response times, with a moderate effect size g = 0.51. Study quality, sample characteristics, or clinical parameters did not moderate these deficits, suggesting that they may be a phenotype in this disorder. Greater stop-signal task omission errors and reduced go accuracy in patients, indicative of altered sustained attention, were detected in secondary outcome measure analysis, although not all studies were available for these measures (only 10 studies available).

"Our review and meta-analysis suggest that the stop-signal task in conjunction with other neurocognitive tests and clinical questionnaires, could become an important tool for the assessment of inhibitory control deficits in adult ADHD," the authors write.

Abstract/Full Text

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