• Journal Article

Effects of methylphenidate and behavior modification on the social and academic behavior of children with disruptive behavior disorders: The moderating role of callous/unemotional traits

Citation

Waschbusch, D. A., Carrey, N. J., Willoughby, M., King, S., & Andrade, B. F. (2007). Effects of methylphenidate and behavior modification on the social and academic behavior of children with disruptive behavior disorders: The moderating role of callous/unemotional traits. Journal of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology, 36(4), 629-644. DOI: 10.1080/15374410701662766

Abstract

This study examined whether response to behavior modification with and without methylphenidate differed for children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) and conduct problems (CP) depending on the presence of callous/unemotional (CU) traits. Participants were 37 children ages 7 to 12, including 19 with ADHD/CP-only and 18 with ADHD/CP-CU, referred to a university-based summer treatment program. Results showed that ADHD/CP-CU children had worse behavior in the behavior-therapy-only (BT-only) condition, especially on measures of CP, noncompliance, and rule violations, but these differences largely disappeared when medication was added to BT. Children with ADHD/CP-CU were also less likely to be normalized by treatment than were children with ADHD/CP-only. These findings, though tentative, suggest that children with ADHD/CP-CU may not show a sufficient positive response to BT alone and that the combination of medication and BT may be especially important for them