Is there a relationship between adult ADHD and bipolar symptoms? A cross-sectional study with primary care applicants in Ankara, Turkey


Irem Ekmekci Ertek, Mustafa Necmi Ilhan, Asiye Ugras Dikmen, Melih Gozukara




Background: Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and Bipolar Affective Disorder (BAD) are two diseases that are frequently interrelated and there are difficulties in diagnosis and treatment. In this study, it was aimed to examine the prevalence of adult ADHD and its relationship with BAD.

Methods: 1517 people attending primary health care services in Ankara were evaluated with sociodemographic data, Adult Attention Deficit and Hyperactivity Disorder Self-Report (ASRS), and Bipolar Prodrome Symptom Scale (BPSS).

Results: The prevalence of adult ADHD was 3.7%. The rate of the participants whose bipolar frequency score was above the cut-off point was 47.2% in the non-ADHD group and 70.4% in the ADHD group. These rates were 7.6% and 37.0% according to the bipolar severity scores, respectively. 14.5% of the ADHD group and 1.6% of the non-ADHD group had a forensic event (p <0.001). 18.2 of the ADHD group and 9.0% of the non-ADHD group had a traffic accident (p=0.041).

Conclusion: A significant relationship between ADHD and prodromal BAD symptoms was found in people over 18 years of age who applied to primary health care institutions, and ADHD was associated with an increased risk of forensic events and traffic accidents.

Keywords: Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder; Bipolar Affective Disorder; prevalence; comorbidity