Cerebellar Volume in Children With Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD): Replication Study

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Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is associated with altered cerebellar volume and cerebellum is associated with cognitive performance. However there are mixed results regarding the cerebellar volume in young patients with ADHD. To clarify the size and direction of this effect, we conducted the analysis on the large public database of brain images. The aim of this study was to confirm that cerebellar volume in ADHD is smaller than in control subjects in currently the largest publicly available cohort of ADHD subjects.We applied cross-sectional case control study design by comparing 286 ADHD patients (61 female) with age and gender matched control subjects. Volumetric measurements of cerebellum were obtained using automated segmentation with FreeSurfer 5.1. Statistical analysis was performed in R-CRAN statistical environment. Patients with ADHD had significantly smaller total cerebellar volumes (134.5±17.11cm3 vs.138.90±15.32 cm3). The effect was present in both females and males (males 136.9±14.37 cm3 vs. 141.20±14.75 cm3; females 125.7±12.34 cm3 vs. 131.20±15.03 cm3). Age was positively and significantly associated with the cerebellar volumes. These results indicate either delayed or disrupted cerebellar development possibly contributing to ADHD pathophysiology.

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