In this longitudinal study of prenatal cocaine exposure (PCE), school-age physical and cognitive development and behavioral characteristics were examined, while controlling for other factors that affect child development. At this follow-up phase, children were on average 7.2 years old, and their caregivers were 33.7 years old, had 12.5 years of education, and 48% were African American. During the first trimester, 20% of the women were frequent cocaine users (≥ 1 line/day). First trimester cocaine exposure predicted decreased weight and height at 7 years. There was no significant relationship between PCE and the cognitive and neuropsychological measures. Third trimester cocaine use predicted more total and externalizing behavior problems on the Child Behavior Checklist  and the Teacher Report Form , and increased activity, inattention, and impulsivity on the Routh Activity  and SNAP scales . Children who were exposed to cocaine throughout pregnancy had more mother- and teacher-rated behavior problems compared to children of women who stopped using early in pregnancy or who never used cocaine prenatally. These detrimental effects of PCE on behavior are consistent with other reports in the literature and with the hypothesis that PCE affects development through changes in neurotransmitter systems. These school-age behaviors may be precursors of later adolescent behavior problems.
prenatal cocaine exposure; school age; growth; cognitive development; behavior problems
To assess the effect of prenatal cocaine exposure on mental health symptoms in 9-year old children controlling for potential confounders.
332 children (170 prenatally cocaine-exposed (PCE), 162 non cocaine-exposed (NCE) were assessed using self (Dominic Interactive; DI) and caregiver report (Child Behavior Checklist; CBCL).
Higher levels of PCE were associated with caregiver report of clinically elevated aggressive and delinquent behavior. With each increased unit of PCE, children were 1.3 times more likely to be rated as aggressive (OR=1.30, 95% CI: 1.02–1.67, p<0.04). For each increased unit of PCE, girls were 2 times more likely to be rated as having delinquent behavior (OR=2.08, 95% CI: 1.46–2.96, p<0.0001). PCE status was also associated with increased odds of delinquent behavior (OR=2.41; 95% CI: 1.16–4.97, p=0.02), primarily due to the increased risk among girls with PCE. While girls with PCE status were 7 times more likely than NCE girls to have delinquent behaviors (OR=7.42; 95% CI: 2.03–27.11, p<0.002) boys with PCE did not demonstrate increased risk (OR=0.98; 95% CI: 0.36–2.65, p>0.97). Foster or adoptive parents were more likely to rate their PCE children as having more thought problems, inattention, delinquent behavior, aggression, externalizing and overall problems (p<0.05) than biologic mothers or relative caregivers. Higher 2nd trimester tobacco exposure was associated with increased odds of caregiver reported anxiety (OR=1.73; 95% CI 1.06–2.81, p<0.03) and marijuana exposure increased the odds of thought problems (OR=1.68; 95% CI 1.01–2.79, p<0.05). Children with PCE self-reported fewer symptoms of oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) compared to NCE children (OR=0.44, 95% CI: 0.21–0.92, p<0.03). Greater tobacco exposure was associated with increased odds of child reported ODD (OR=1.24; 95% CI 1.03–1.78, p<0.03).
Higher PCE was associated with disruptive behaviors including aggression and delinquent behavior among girls by caregiver report, but not child report. These findings highlight the need for early behavioral assessment using multiple informants in multi-risk children.
Prenatal cocaine exposure; Mental health; Child Behavior Checklist; Dominic Interactive; Tobacco; Neurobehavioral teratology
This study examines the relationship between prenatal cocaine exposure and parent-reported child behavior problems at age 7 years.
Data are from 407 African-American children (210 cocaine-exposed, 197 non-cocaine-exposed) enrolled prospectively at birth in a longitudinal study on the neurodevelopmental consequences of in utero exposure to cocaine. Prenatal cocaine exposure was assessed at delivery through maternal self-report and bioassays (maternal and infant urine and infant meconium). The Achenbach Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL), a measure of childhood externalizing and internalizing behavior problems, was completed by the child’s current primary caregiver during an assessment visit scheduled when the child was seven years old.
Structural equation and GLM/GEE models disclosed no association linking prenatal cocaine exposure status or level of cocaine exposure to child behavior (CBCL Externalizing and Internalizing scores or the eight CBCL sub-scale scores).
This evidence, based on standardized ratings by the current primary caregiver, fails to support hypothesized cocaine-associated behavioral problems in school-aged children with in utero cocaine exposure. A next step in this line of research is to secure standardized ratings from other informants (e.g., teachers, youth self-report).
cocaine; prenatal exposure; child behavior
Predictors of caregiver-reported behavior problems for 3-year-olds with prenatal cocaine exposure (PCE) and matched controls were examined using structural equation modeling. We tested whether PCE had a direct effect on child behavior problems in a model that included other prenatal drug exposure, child sex, caregiver depression, and the quality of the child’s home environment. The sample (N = 256) was drawn from a longitudinal, prospective study of children of (predominantly crack) cocaine-using women and controls matched on race, socioeconomic status, parity, and pregnancy risk. Child Behavior Problems was modeled as a latent variable composed of the 48-item Conners’ Parent Report Scale Conduct Problem and Impulsive-Hyperactive scales and the Eyberg Child Behavior Inventory Intensity scale. Caregiver depression was the only significant predictor of Child Behavior Problems. Mean levels of caregiver self-reported depression and reported child behavior problems did not differ between groups. Mean depression scores were well above the recommended clinical cutoff while mean child behavior problems scores were within normal limits. The model explained 21% of the variance in caregiver-reported child behavior problems in our sample of rural African American, low SES youngsters. Non-maternal caregivers of cocaine-exposed children had significantly lower mean depression scores and mean child behavior problems ratings for 2 of 3 scales used in the study compared to biological mothers of children with PCE and controls. For all groups, much larger proportions of children were rated as having clinically significant behavior problems than would be expected based on the prevalence of behavior problems in the general population.
The Objective of this follow-up study was to assess the long-term effects of clinical infant home-visiting services on child outcomes at school entry.
Participants were 63 five-year-olds from low-income families, half of whom were referred to parent–infant home-visiting services during the first 18 months of life due to concerns about the caretaking environment. Families received between 0 and 18 months of weekly home visits based on infant age at entry into the study. At age 5, children were rated by teachers on the Preschool Behavior Questionnaire for behavior problems in the classroom and by parents both on the Simmons Behavior Checklist for behavior problems at home and on the Achenbach Social Competence Items for positive play behaviors with friends.
With initial family risk status and child gender controlled, teacher-rated hostile behavior problems decreased in dose–response relation to the duration of early home-visiting services, which accounted for 15% of the variance in child hostile behavior. Parents' reports of positive play behaviors were positively linearly related to service duration. Parents' reports of behavior problems were less reliably related to service duration than teacher reports.
Early home-visiting services reduced the incidence of aggressive behavior problems among socially at-risk children for up to 3.5 years after the end of services.
aggression; intervention; preschool; conduct disorder; oppositional disorder
In this study, we explored informant characteristics as determinants of parent–teacher disagreement on preschoolers’ psychosocial problems. Teacher characteristics were included in the analyses, in addition to child and parent factors. Psychosocial problems of 732 4-year olds from a Norwegian community sample were assessed by parents and teachers (CBCL-TRF). Furthermore, teachers reported on their education, experience and relationship to the child. Parental stress and psychopathology were also measured. Teachers rated children considerably lower than their parents did, especially on internalizing problems. When teachers rated more child problems, this was strongly associated with conflict in the teacher–child relationship, which predicted disagreement more than other factors. The highest agreement was on boys’ externalizing problems. Girls’ behavior was rated much lower by teachers than boys’ behavior compared to parents’ ratings. Possible teacher perception biases are discussed, such as teacher–child conflict, non-identification of internalizing problems, and same-gender child preference.
Informant; Discrepancy; Disagreement; Psychopathology; Child; Preschool; Psychology; Psychiatry; Child and School Psychology
This study evaluated how enrollment in special education services in 11 year old children relates to prenatal cocaine exposure, psychopathology, and other risk factors.
Participants were 498 children enrolled in The Maternal Lifestyle Study, a prospective, longitudinal, multisite study examining outcomes of children with prenatal cocaine exposure. Logistic regression was used to examine the effect of prenatal cocaine exposure and psychopathology on enrollment in an individualized education plan (a designation specific to children with special education needs), with environmental, maternal, and infant medical variables as covariates.
Prenatal cocaine exposure, an interaction of prenatal cocaine exposure and Oppositional Defiant Disorder, child Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, parent-reported internalizing behaviors, and teacher-reported externalizing behaviors, predicted enrollment in an individualized education plan. Other statistically significant variables in the model were male gender, low birth weight, being small for gestational age, white race, caregiver change, low socio-economic status, low child intelligence quotient, caregiver depression, and prenatal marijuana exposure.
Prenatal cocaine exposure increased the likelihood of receiving an individualized education plan with adjustment for covariates. Psychopathology also predicted this special education outcome, in combination with and independent of prenatal cocaine exposure.
cocaine; special education; behavior; prenatal substance exposure
To test a developmental model of neurobehavioral dysregulation relating prenatal substance exposure to behavior problems at age 7.
PATIENTS AND METHODS
The sample included 360 cocaine-exposed and 480 unexposed children from lower to lower middle class families of which 78% were African American. Structural equation modeling (SEM) was used to test models whereby prenatal exposure to cocaine and other substances would result in neurobehavioral dysregulation in infancy, which would predict externalizing and internalizing behavior problems in early childhood. SEM models were developed for individual and combined parent and teacher report for externalizing, internalizing, and total problem scores on the Child Behavior Checklist.
The Goodness of Fit Statistics indicated that all of the models met criteria for adequate fit with 7 of the 9 models explaining 18 to 60% of the variance in behavior problems at age 7. The paths in the models indicate that there are direct effects of prenatal substance exposure on 7-year behavior problems as well as indirect effects, including neurobehavioral dysregulation.
Prenatal substance exposure affects behavior problems at age 7 through two mechanisms. The direct pathway is consistent with a teratogenic effect. Indirect pathways suggest cascading effects where prenatal substance exposure results in neurobehavioral dysregulation manifesting as deviations in later behavioral expression. Developmental models provide an understanding of pathways that describe how prenatal substance exposure affects child outcome and have significant implications for early identification and prevention.
Prenatal substance exposure; cocaine; neurobehavioral dysregulation; behavior problems
To evaluate whether prenatal cocaine exposure (PCE), or the interaction between PCE and contextual variables, is associated with children's language at age 6 and 9.5 years, adjusting for relevant covariates.
Analyses were based on 160 low-income, urban children from a prospective study who completed a standardized language assessment at 6 and 9.5 years. PCE was determined using neonatal meconium assays and maternal self-report.
Significant interaction effects of PCE on language outcomes were found in multivariate longitudinal analyses using generalized estimating equations (GEE). Children with PCE had lower receptive language than unexposed children at 6 but not at 9.5 years, lower expressive language if they had lower birthweight, and lower expressive and total language if they were female. Other risk (e.g., violence exposure) and protective factors (e.g., preschool experience) were related to language outcomes regardless of PCE status.
Age, birthweight, and gender moderated the relation between PCE and school-aged children's language.
birthweight; elementary school-aged children; gender; prenatal cocaine exposure; preschool experience; receptive and expressive language development; violence exposure
To ascertain whether factors of the family environment and gestational period are associated with the appearance of ADHD in children, as reported by various different informants (mothers and teachers).
This paper presents results from the dataset of a longitudinal study to evaluate behavioral problems among schoolchildren in São Gonçalo, Rio de Janeiro State, in 2005 and 2006. The cross-section considered for this paper comprises records of exposure factors and ADHD. In all, 370 schoolchildren of the public school system were assessed by 3-stage cluster sampling. The Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL) and the Teacher Report Form (TRF) were used to measure outcomes. The exposure factors examined were: profile of child and mother, variables relating to the family environment, and perinatal considerations. The questions were answered by mothers and teachers. A hierarchical logistic regression model was used.
Precariously functioning families, lack of social support for mothers, adverse life events and discord during pregnancy were the factors associated with mother-reported ADHD. When ADHD was reported by teachers, the variables selected were: Intelligence quotient (IQ) and sex, with children with low IQ scores and boys more likely to display the disorder.
Assessment of ADHD by teachers or mothers reveals specific characteristics that reflect how each of these informants understands the children. This highlights the importance of using informants from different environments in diagnosing the disorder.
ADHD; Family environment; Perinatal period; Hierarchical model
Sleep data were collected by maternal report in a prospective longitudinal follow-up of cocaine exposed and unexposed children. There were 139 subjects: 23 with no prenatal drug exposure, 55 exposed to cocaine alone or in combination with other drugs, and 61 exposed to drugs other than cocaine. Characteristics differed between exposure groups, including birth size, caretaker changes, and maternal SES and postnatal drug use. Compared to those with no drug exposure, children with prenatal drug exposure other than cocaine experienced greater sleep problems (mean [SD], 5 [4.93] vs 7.7 [4.85], p = .026). Prenatal nicotine exposure was a unique predictor of sleep problems (R2 = .028, p = .048). Early sleep problems predicted later sleep problems (all p’s <.01). Together, these preliminary findings suggest possible neurotoxic sleep effects that persist over time. Larger studies, however, need to be conducted that better control for potential postnatal confounding factors.
We examined to what extent internalizing and externalizing problems at age 3 preceded and predicted parental divorce, and if divorce and the time lapse since divorce were related to internalizing and externalizing problems at age 12.
Parental ratings of internalizing and externalizing problems were collected with the Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL) in a large sample (N = 6,426) of 3-year-old children. All these children were followed through the age of 12 years, at which parents completed the CBCL again, while teachers completed the Teacher’s Report Form. Children whose parents divorced between age 3 and age 12 were compared with children whose families remained intact.
Girls whose parents divorced between ages 3 and 12 already showed more externalizing problems at age 3 than girls whose parents stayed married. Higher levels of externalizing problems in girls at age 3 predicted later parental divorce. Parental reports indicated that 12-year-olds with divorced parents showed more internalizing and externalizing problems than children with married parents. Levels of teacher-reported problems were not different between children with married versus divorced parents. However, children whose parents divorced between ages 3 and 12 showed more teacher-rated internalizing problems at age 12 when the divorce was more recent than when the divorce was less recent. Parental ratings of both internalizing and externalizing problems at age 12 were not associated with the time lapse since divorce.
Externalizing problems in girls precede and predict later parental divorce. Post-divorce problems in children vary by raters, and may depend on the time lapse since divorce.
Parental divorce; Pre-divorce problems; Internalizing and externalizing problems
To examine screening results obtained by serial annual behavioral assessment of children with prenatal drug exposure.
The Maternal Lifestyle Study enrolled children with prenatal cocaine exposure (PCE) at birth for longitudinal assessments of developmental, behavioral, and health outcomes. At 8, 9, 10, 11, and 12 years of age, caregivers rated participants on the Pediatric Symptom Checklist (PSC). Serial PSC results were compared to an established broad-based behavioral measure at 9, 11, and 13 years. PSC results were analyzed for 1,081 children who had at least 2 annual screens during the 5-year time span. Most subjects (87%) had 4 or more annual screens rated by the same caregiver (80%). PSC scores (and Positive screens) over time were compared at different time points for those with and without PCE. Covariates, including demographic factors and exposures to certain other substances, were controlled.
Children with PCE had significantly higher scores overall, with more Positive screens for behavior problems than children without PCE. Children with PCE had more externalizing behavior problems. Children exposed to tobacco pre- and post-natally also showed higher PSC scores. Over time, PSC scores differed slightly from the 8-year scores, without clear directional trend. Earlier PSC results predicted later behavioral outcomes.
Findings of increased total PSC scores and Positive PSC screens for behavioral concerns in this group of children with prenatal substance exposure support the growing body of evidence that additional attention to identification of mental health problems may be warranted in this high-risk group.
Behavior disorder; child behavior; mental health; screening; prenatal cocaine exposure; Pediatric Symptom Checklist
Prenatal cocaine exposure (PCE) is associated with blunted stress responsivity within the extrauterine environment. This study investigated the association between PCE and diurnal salivary cortisol levels in preadolescent children characterized by high biological and/or social risk (N = 725). Saliva samples were collected at their home. Analyses revealed no group differences in basal evening or morning cortisol levels; however, children with higher degrees of PCE exhibited blunted overnight increases in cortisol, controlling for additional risk factors. Race and caregiver depression were also associated with diurnal cortisol patterns. While repeated PCE may contribute to alterations in the normal or expected stress response later in life, sociodemographic and environmental factors are likewise important in understanding hormone physiology, especially as more time elapses from the PCE. Anticipating the potential long-term medical, developmental, or behavioral effects of an altered ability to mount a normal protective cortisol stress response is essential in optimizing the outcomes of children with PCE.
To examine the relationship between early parenting stress and later child behavior in a high risk sample and measure the effect of drug exposure on the relationship between parenting stress and child behavior.
A subset of child-caregiver dyads (n = 607) were selected from the Maternal Lifestyle Study, which is a large sample of children (n = 1388) with prenatal cocaine exposure and a comparison sample unexposed to cocaine. Of the 607 dyads, 221 were prenatally exposed to cocaine and 386 were unexposed to cocaine. Selection was based on the presence of a stable caregiver at 4 and 36 months with no evidence of change in caregiver between those time points.
Parenting stress at 4 months significantly predicted child externalizing behavior at 36 months. These relations were unaffected by cocaine exposure suggesting the relationship between parenting stress and behavioral outcome exists for high-risk children regardless of drug exposure history.
These results extend the findings of the relationship between parenting stress and child behavior to a sample of high-risk children with prenatal drug exposure. Implications for outcome and treatment are discussed.
disruptive behavior; parenting stress; high-risk children; prenatal drug exposure; cocaine
Studies through 6 years have shown no long-term direct effects of prenatal cocaine exposure (PCE) on children’s physical growth, developmental test scores, or language outcomes. Little is known about the effects of PCE among school-aged children aged 6 years and older.
We reviewed articles from studies that examined the effects of PCE on growth, cognitive ability, academic functioning, and brain structure and function among school-aged children.
Articles were obtained by searching PubMed, Medline, TOXNET, and PsycInfo databases from January 1980 to December 2008 with the terms “prenatal cocaine exposure,” “cocaine,” “drug exposure,” “substance exposure,” “maternal drug use,” “polysubstance,” “children,” “adolescent,” “in utero,” “pregnancy,” “development,” and “behavior.” Criteria for inclusion were (1) empirical research on children aged 6 years and older prenatally exposed to cocaine, (2) peer-reviewed English-language journal, (3) comparison group, (4) longitudinal follow-up or historical prospective design, (5) masked assessment, (6) exclusion of subjects with serious medical disabilities, and (7) studies that reported nonredundant findings for samples used in multiple investigations. Thirty-two unique studies met the criteria. Each article was independently abstracted by 2 authors to obtain sample composition, methods of PCE assessment, study design, comparison groups, dependent variables, covariates, and results.
Associations between PCE and growth, cognitive ability, academic achievement, and language functioning were small and attenuated by environmental variables. PCE had significant negative associations with sustained attention and behavioral self-regulation, even with covariate control. Although emerging evidence suggests PCE-related alterations in brain structure and function, interpretation is limited by methodologic inconsistencies.
Consistent with findings among preschool-aged children, environmental variables play a key role in moderating and explaining the effects of PCE on school-aged children’s functioning. After controlling for these effects, PCE-related impairments are reliably reported in sustained attention and behavioral self-regulation among school-aged children. Pediatrics 2010;125:554–565
cocaine; maternal exposure; prenatal exposure delayed effects; attention; behavior; growth; language; adolescent development
To examine how much distress children report in response to violence that they have witnessed and how this is associated with parental reports of children’s behavior.
As part of a study of in utero exposure to cocaine, children completed the Levonn interview for assessing children’s symptoms of distress in response to witnessing violence. The children’s care givers completed the Exposure to Violence Interview (EVI), a caretaker-report measure of the child’s exposure to violent events during the last 12 months. The EVI was analyzed as a 3-level variable: no exposure, low exposure, and high exposure. The caregivers also completed the Children’s Behavior Checklist (CBCL).
Of 94 six-year-old children, 58% had no exposure to violence, 36% had low exposure to violence, and 6% had high exposure to violence, according to caretaker reports. The children’s median ±SD Levonn score was 64 (SD ± 19.3). The mean (SD ± CBCL total T-score was 53 (SD ± 10.2). In multiple regression analyses with gender, low and high exposure on EVI, Levonn, and prenatal cocaine exposure status as predictors, the Levonn score explained 4.8% of total variance in children’s CBCL internalizing scores, 9.1% of the total variance in CBCL externalizing score, and 12.2% of the total variance in CBCL total score (P = .04, P = .004, and P <.001, respectively).
After accounting for the caretaker’s report of the level of the child’s exposure to violence, the child’s own report significantly increased the amount of variance in predicting child behavior problems with the CBCL. These findings indicate that clinicians and researchers should elicit children’s own accounts of exposure to violence in addition to the caretakers’ when attempting to understand children’s behavior.
Clinical and experimental reports suggest that prenatal cocaine exposure (PCE) alters the offsprings’ social interactions with caregivers and conspecifics. Children exposed to prenatal cocaine show deficits in caregiver attachment and play behavior. In animal models, a developmental pattern of effects that range from deficits in play and social interaction during adolescence, to aggressive reactions during competition in adulthood is seen. This review will focus primarily on the effects of PCE on social behaviors involving conspecifics in animal models. Social relationships are critical to the developing organism; maternally directed interactions are necessary for initial survival. Juvenile rats deprived of play behavior, one of the earliest forms of non-mother directed social behaviors in rodents, show deficits in learning tasks and sexual competence. Social behavior is inherently complex. Because the emergence of appropriate social skills involves the interplay between various conceptual and biological facets of behavior and social information, it may be a particularly sensitive measure of prenatal insult. The social behavior surveyed include social interactions, play behavior/fighting, scent marking, and aggressive behavior in the offspring, as well as aspects of maternal behavior. The goal is to determine if there is a consensus of results in the literature with respect to PCE and social behaviors, and to discuss discrepant findings in terms of exposure models, the paradigms, and dependent variables, as well as housing conditions, and the sex and age of the offspring at testing. As there is increasing evidence that deficits in social behavior may be sequelae of developmental exposure alcohol, we compare changes in social behaviors reported for prenatal alcohol with those reported for prenatal cocaine. Shortcomings in the both literatures are identified and addressed in an effort to improve the translational value of future experimentation.
prenatal cocaine; social interactions; play behavior/fighting; aggression; scent marking; maternal behavior; prenatal alcohol
To examine the impact of prenatal cocaine exposure and maternal behavioral health (recent drug use and psychological functioning) on child behavior at age 5 years.
In this longitudinal investigation, maternal report of child behavior was assessed using the Achenbach Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL) in 140 cocaine-exposed and 181 noncocaine-exposed (61 alcohol, tobacco, and/or marijuana-exposed, and 120 nondrug-exposed) low-income, African American children. Structural equation modeling was used to estimate suspected causal relationships between indicators of maternal behavioral health at 5-year follow-up, according to self-report on a modified Addiction Severity Index (ASI) and CBCL scores.
Prenatal cocaine exposure was not related to child behavior at age 5. Recent maternal drug use and psychological functioning had relationships with CBCL Internalizing and Externalizing scores. However, when considered within a combined model, only maternal psychological functioning remained significant.
Findings highlight the importance of maternal functioning in the behavioral outcome of children exposed prenatally to cocaine.
prenatal cocaine exposure; child behavior; CBCL
Prenatal cocaine exposure is associated with alterations in arousal regulation in response to stress in young children. However, relations between cocaine exposure and stress response in adolescence have not been examined. We examined salivary cortisol, self-reported emotion, heart rate, and blood pressure (BP) responses to the Trier Social Stress Test (TSST) in 49 Prenatally Cocaine and other drug Exposed (PCE) and 33 Non Cocaine Exposed (NCE) adolescents. PCE adolescents had higher cortisol levels before and after stress exposure than NCE adolescents. PCE girls showed an elevated anxiety response to stress (compared to NCE girls) and PCE boys showed a dampened diastolic BP response (compared to NCE boys). Girls showed higher anger response and lower pre-stress systolic BP than boys. Group differences were found controlling for potential confounding variables and were not moderated by caregiver-child relationship quality (although relationship quality predicted HPA-Axis and anxiety response). Findings suggest that prenatal drug exposure is associated with altered stress response in adolescence and that gender moderates this association.
Prenatal cocaine exposure; Stress response; Cortisol; Emotion; Sex differences
The objective of this study was to determine the normative data and psychometric properties of the parent and teacher rating form of the child behavior checklist (CBCL) in an Iranian community sample.
A sample of 6-12 year old students was randomly selected from ten elementary schools in Tehran, Iran. The parent's and teacher's versions of CBCL were accomplished. Clinical interview and the kiddie schedule for affective disorders and schizophrenia – present and lifetime version, Persian version (K-SADS-PL-PV) were used to evaluate the validity and the cut-off point of CBCL and the teacher rating form (TRF).
Among 600 recruited students with mean age of 9.11 years (SD=1.45), 54.16% were girls (n=325). Girls had significantly lower scores in Attention Problems, Delinquent Behavior, Aggressive Behavior, Externalizing and Total Problems than boys (P<0.01). The relation was significant between the CBCL Internalizing and students' ages (β=0.124, P=0.002). The Internal consistency, the correlation among the CBCL and TRF scales, and the inter-rater correlations for CBCL/TRF scales were good to high for most indices and subscales. Based on the receiver operating characteristics (ROC) analysis the best convergences were between the CBCL Attention Problems subscale and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) diagnosis, the CBCL Total Problems and any disorders, the CBCL Externalizing and ADHD+ODD diagnosis. The sensitivities and specificities of the CBCL subscales were higher than the TRF except for Externalizing/ADHD+ oppositional defiant disorder (ODD) which was reverse.
These results support the multicultural CBCL/TRF findings. CBCL is a useful instrument to consider ADHD and any disorders in community samples.
Child Behavior; Psychometric; Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder; Checklist
The objective of this study was to assess whether a mediated model of change could account for the long-term effects of infant home-visiting services observed at ages 5 and 7 years in a high-risk cohort. Participants were 41 mothers and infants from low-income families who were referred to parent–infant home-visiting services during the first 9 months of life due to concerns about the caretaking environment. Services ended when infants reached 18 months of age. Families received between 0 and 18 months of weekly home visits based on infant age of entry into the study. During childhood (ages 5 and 7 years), teachers rated children's behavior problems using standardized instruments. Early home-visiting services accounted for positive child outcomes at 18 months, 5 years, and 7 years of age; however, earlier positive outcomes related to intervention did not account for intervention-related effects at later ages. Further inspection of the data revealed that two additional principles, one of escalating morbidity among less intensively served groups and one of generalized family problem-solving skills, were needed to account for the pattern of effects over time. We conclude that the “domino models” assessed by mediational analyses may be too simple to capture the intervention-related change processes occurring in high-risk cohorts over time.
Attention skills may form an important developmental mechanism. A mediation model was examined in which behavioral problems of moderately preterm and term children at school age are explained by attention performance. Parents and teachers completed behavioral assessments of 348 moderately preterm children and 182 term children at 8 years of age. Children were administered a test of sustained selective attention. Preterm birth was associated with more behavioral and attention difficulties. Gestational age, prenatal maternal smoking, and gender were associated with mothers’, fathers’, and teachers’ reports of children’s problem behavior. Sustained selective attention partially mediated the relationship between birth status and problem behavior. Development of attention skills should be an important focus for future research in moderately preterm children.
Moderately preterm; Late preterm; Premature; Attention skills; Behavior problems; DSM IV; School age
To evaluate the epidemiology of attention problems using parent, teacher, and youth informants among a nationally representative Turkish sample.
The children and adolescents, 4 to 18 years old, were selected from a random household survey. Attention problems derived from the Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL) (N = 4,488), Teacher Report Form (TRF) (N = 2,360), and the Youth Self Report (YSR) (N = 2,206) were examined.
The CBCL and TRF attention problems scores were higher among young male children, whereas the YSR reported scores were higher among older adolescents without a gender effect. The CBCL and YSR scores were also higher by urban residence.
Compared with other European samples, our national sample had higher mean attention problems scores than the Scandinavian but lower mean scores than the former Soviet Union samples. In addition to elucidating the profile of attention problems in Turkey, our results also contribute to understanding the comparative global epidemiology of attention problems.
attention problems; children; adolescents; CBCL; YSR; TRF; epidemiology
The relationships between preschool children and their teachers are an important component of the quality of the preschool experience. This study used attribution theory as a framework to better understand these relationships, examining the connection between teachers’ perceptions of children's behavior and teachers’ behavior toward those children. One hundred seven preschool children and 24 preschool teachers participated in this study. Two teachers reported on each child's behavior using the Teacher Report Form of the Child Behavior Checklist. Commands and praise directed toward children by the teachers in the study were coded from classroom videotapes. Teachers gave more commands to children they perceived as having greater general behavior problems, even after controlling for the shared variance in the other classroom teacher's report of the child's behavior. Implications for school psychologists, teachers, and researchers are discussed.
Preschool Teachers; Preschool Students; Teacher Student Interaction; Teacher Attitudes; Classroom Behavior