Navigation Links
Adopted Children at Slightly Higher Mental Health Risk

But the vast majority of adoptees are 'doing fine,' researcher says

MONDAY, May 5 (HealthDay News) -- A small proportion of adopted American teens appear to be at heightened risk for different emotional and behavioral problems than their non-adopted counterparts.

But that risk is moderate, emphasized the authors of a study in the May issue of Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine.

"Most adoptees are doing fine," said Margaret Keyes, lead author of the study and research psychologist at the Minnesota Center for Twin and Family Research at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis. Still, new data on the long-term health of adopted children is always useful, she reasoned.

"When you have all the information, you're better prepared to make decisions for your family," Keyes said. "You have information that your adopted child might be at a slightly increased risk, so you can be aware of that and can you use the social services agencies with which you already familiar through the process of adopting."

"There is no revelation here. This is consistent with previous research," added Adam Pertman, executive director of the Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute and author of Adoption Nation. "It's a good, solid piece of work. Adoptive parents can be reassured that their kids will be just fine, thank you. We do need to do a better job of learning how to deal with children and be prepared in case we are in that minority whose kids are represented in this study. It's not scary. It's cautionary."

According to background information in the article, some 120,000 children are adopted annually in the United States, and there are about 1.5 million adopted American children under the age of 18.

International adoptions are increasingly replacing domestic adoptions, with about 40,000 children transferred between more than 100 countries each year as a result of adoption.

Although some studies have found an increased risk of social, intellectual and emotional problems among children who were exposed to substances before they were born or who were neglected prior to adoption, the risk among children who don't have this kind of history hasn't been clear.

The researchers assessed 514 internationally adopted adolescents and 178 domestically adopted adolescents (aged 11 to 21) and compared them with 540 non-adopted kids of the same age.

Children who had been adopted scored higher than non-adoptees on continuous measures of behavioral and emotional problems, the team found. Adoptees were about twice as likely to have had contact with a mental health professional and of having a disruptive behavior disorder, according to the study.

Domestic adoptees were more than twice as likely to have an "externalizing disorder" (one that manifests in outward behavior) than international adoptees, the researchers added.

As one example, seven out of every 100 non-adopted kids met the criteria for ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder), while 14 to 15 of adopted kids met the criteria, Keyes said. Still, the overall rate was not alarming.

To put it into perspective, Keyes pointed out that simply giving birth to a male is risky, since boys have a higher chance of being diagnosed with a disruptive behavior disorder than girls.

"It's important not to stigmatize adoption," Pertman said. "Adoption is not causing these problems."

A second study in the same issue of the journal looked at children who had lost a parent to death suddenly. Researchers at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine found that these bereaved youngsters had triple the risk of depression and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) than kids with two parents still alive.

According to the article, 4 percent of children in Western countries have experienced the death of a parent.

More information

There's more on adoption at the Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute.

SOURCES: Margaret A. Keyes, Ph.D., research psychologist, Minnesota Center for Twin and Family Research, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis; Adam Pertman, executive director, Evan B. Donaldson Adoption Institute, Boston, and author Adoption Nation; May Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine

Copyright©2008 ScoutNews,LLC.
All rights reserved  

Related medicine news :

1. Siemens Soarian Health Information Management is Widely Adopted by Leading Healthcare Institutions in 2007
2. Mediwares Transfusion Management Software Adopted by Four Additional Tenet Hospitals
3. Animal Planet Pet Video to Provide 2 Million Free Training DVDs to New Pet Parents of Adopted Shelter Dogs and Cats
4. Children of depressed moms do better when dad is involved, SLU researcher finds
5. High pollution linked to poor lung function growth in children in Mexico City
6. NYC-area 1st: Morgan Stanley Childrens Hospital performs transcatheter pulmonary valve replacement
7. Obese Children Miss More School Days
8. Ultra-Runner to Run 63 Marathons in 63 Days for Children with Incurable Disease
9. Psoriasis Cure Now offers Back to School Resources for Parents of Children with Psoriasis
10. Researchers estimate about 9 percent of US children age 8 to 15 meet criteria for having ADHD
11. Majority of 2.4 Million U.S. Children With ADHD Not Diagnosed or Consistently Treated, According to New Gold Standard Study by Cincinnati Childrens Researchers
Post Your Comments:
Related Image:
Adopted Children at Slightly Higher Mental Health Risk
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... December 01, 2015 , ... ... must mark the film for accurate interpretation by the radiologist. The marking utensils ... inventor from Sacramento, Calif., has found a way to alleviate this problem. , ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... December 01, 2015 , ... Visage accelerates mobile ... wholly owned subsidiary of Pro Medicus Ltd. (ASX: PME), has announced they are ... of North America (RSNA) 2015 annual meeting through December 3 in Chicago, Illinois, ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... , ... December 01, 2015 , ... ... it has been selected as a finalist in this year’s Fierce Innovation Awards: ... Next IT Healthcare was recognized as a finalist in the category of Digital ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... December 01, 2015 , ... Lutronic, a leading innovator of aesthetic and ... to the devices for sale in the United States. Clarity is a Superior ... nm Nd:YAG lasers, into a single platform that is easy to own and operate. ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... ... December 01, 2015 , ... ... Effective Post-Affiliation Integration ,” addresses a main “pain point” for merging or aligning ... results, once a deal is signed. This quick-read guidance suggests that failing ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:12/1/2015)... , Dec. 1, 2015  Athletic apparel ... founder have agreed to pay $1.35 million to ... advertised the company,s copper-infused compression clothing would relieve ... arthritis and other diseases. Tommie ... requires the company and its founder and chairman ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... de diciembre de 2015  AccuTEC Blades, ... de precisión, develó hoy un nuevo logo ... marca. El nuevo logo destaca la experiencia ... ingeniería de productos con cuchillas donde "el ... --> ...
(Date:12/1/2015)... --> --> ... Acid Labeling Market by Product (Reagents & Kits, Services), ... Vitro Transcription, Reverse Transcription, End Labeling), by Region - ... market is expected to reach USD 1,925.7 Million by ... a CAGR of 8.65%. Browse 77 market ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: