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Prematurity and Low Birth Weight Tied to Hyperactivity Disorder

(PSYCHIATRIC TIMES) - AARHUS, Denmark, June 5 ? Children born prematurely and those born at term but with low birth weights have an increased risk of developing so-called hyperkinetic disorder, according to researchers here.

The syndrome, hyperkinetic disorder, includes a variety of activity and attention disturbances-hyperactivity, poor attention span, impulsive behavior--equivalent to attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD combined type), according to a report in the Archives of Disease in Childhood. It is the fourth most frequent discharge diagnosis in child psychiatry in Denmark.

The finding emerged from a 14-year birth-record study that included a comparison of 834 children diagnosed with hyperkinetic disorder between ages of two and 18 (median 8.8) and 20,100 controls with no mental disorders.

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