Eating disorders impact on vigilance and decision making of a community sample of treatment naive attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder young adults

Bruno Palazzo Nazar*, Amanda Pompeu Trindade, Monica Leslie, Leandro Fernandes Malloy-Diniz, Joseph Sergeant, Janet Treasure, Paulo Mattos

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Although impulsivity is suggested as a possible link to explain the association of Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) with an Eating Disorder (ED), there is little research on how clinical and cognitive/neuropsychological functioning might change when this comorbidity occurs. ADHD individuals are at a higher of developing ED and also obesity. Some research has described the impact of ADHD in clinical treatment-seeking samples of ED patients. Consequently, we investigated how ED impacted on clinical and cognitive variables of a community sample of treatment-naive ADHD individuals. Ninety college students arranged in three groups (ADHD+ED, ADHD only and Controls) were analyzed using semi-structured interviews for ADHD (K-SADS), the Iowa Gambling Task, the Conner's Continuous Performance Test, Digit and Visual span, as well as rating scales for anxiety (STAI), depression (BDI) and impulsivity (BIS-11), and binge eating (BES). We found that ADHD+ED individuals significantly differed from both groups, presenting with a higher body mass index; more hyperactivity-impulsivity symptoms; higher binge eating scores; more omission errors on the Continuous Performance Test; disadvantageous choices on the Iowa Gambling Task. Also, we demonstrated through a moderation/mediation analysis that a greater level of binge eating mediated the increases in body mass index on our sample. There were no significant paths to explain binge-eating severity through changes on any of the neuropsychological tests used. The presence of an ED in normal weight in a community sample of ADHD individuals is associated with higher body mass index and a worse cognitive functioning.

Original languageEnglish
Article number531
Pages (from-to)1-10
Number of pages10
JournalFrontiers in Psychiatry
Volume9
Issue numberNovember
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 6 Nov 2018

Keywords

  • ADHD
  • Binge eating
  • Bulimia
  • Comorbidity
  • Decision making
  • Eating disorders
  • Neuropsychology
  • Obesity

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