From assortative mating theory to genetic background, several ethipathogenic hypotheses in ASD deal with the traits of parents.
several ethipathogenic hypotheses in ASD deal with the traits of parents. The objectives of our study were to measure the ADHD and autism spectrum disorder quotients in parents of children diagnosed with ASD comorbid with ADHD and to correlate the measurements for the tests in parents with those in their children. The specific aim was to identify whether any significant correlations exist.
Fifty-two pairs of parents of children with autism spectrum disorders and ADHD were included in this study, based on informed consent and the ethical committee's approval. The child's diagnosis was established by a specialist in child and adolescent psychiatry, based on the child's clinical symptoms and on specific diagnostic scales, such as the ADOS and ADHD-rating scale. The parents completed an Autism Spectrum Quotient Scale (ASQS) and an adult ADHD scale. The data were analyzed using SPSS 22.0 and Excel. The correlations were verified using Spearman's non-parametric correlation test.
There was a strong correlation between the parents’ ADHD scores (r = 0.5, P < 0.001), and a reverse medium correlation between the mother's ADHD score and the child's ADOS score (r = –0.32, P = 0.02). The father's ASQS and ADHD scores correlated between each other (r = 0.31, P = 0.02). There were no correlations between the parents’ and the child's ADHD score, nor between the child's ADOS score and the parents’ ASQS scores.
Our results suggest that ADHD symptoms in parents of children with autism spectrum disorders comorbid with ADHD might be predictors for the child's prognosis.
Disclosure of interest
The authors have not supplied their declaration of competing interest.