DSM-5 eating disorder symptoms in adolescents with and without attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder: a population-based study

Matthew Bisset, Nicole Rinehart, Emma Sciberras

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6 Citations (Scopus)


Objective: Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is associated with increased eating disorder symptoms, yet little research examining this association has taken a diagnostic approach using a population-based sample. This cross-sectional study examined differences in DSM-5 eating disorder symptoms and partial-syndrome diagnoses at 14–15 years of age in adolescents with and without ADHD in a population-based sample. Method: This study uses data from waves 1, 5 and 6 of the Longitudinal Study of Australian Children (N = 2,672). ADHD (6.9%) was defined at 12–13 years of age by both parent- and teacher-reported hyperactivity-inattention scores ≥90th percentile on the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire, parent-reported ADHD diagnosis, and/or ADHD medication treatment. Adolescents reported eating disorder symptoms at 14–15 years of age via the Branched Eating Disorders Test. Results: Boys with ADHD had greater odds of regular objective binge eating than boys without ADHD (OR: 9.4; 95% CI: 1.7–52.8; p =.01). Groups did not differ in prevalence of any other eating disorder symptoms or partial-syndrome diagnoses. Discussion: Boys with ADHD appear to be at a greater risk of regular binge eating classified by DSM-5 criteria at 14–15 years of age. Overall, the risk for eating disorder symptoms and partial-syndrome diagnoses in adolescents with ADHD does not appear to be high at 14–15 years of age when using DSM-5 criteria with population-based sampling.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)855-862
Number of pages8
JournalInternational Journal of Eating Disorders
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2019
Externally publishedYes


  • adolescent
  • anorexia nervosa
  • attention-deficit disorder with hyperactivity
  • binge-eating disorder
  • bulimia nervosa
  • feeding and eating disorders

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