The female side of ADHD and ASD

Francien Maria Kok

Research output: ThesisThesis fully internal (DIV)

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This PhD study investigated the neurodevelopmental disorders ADHD and ASD in girls and women. Since these disorders were first described in the first half of the last century, the focus was on what they looked like in boys and men. The first studies described only males, and although over time females were increasingly included, both ADHD and ASD continued to be considered male disorders. In the past decade this changed, particularly after reports that women respond very differently to certain medications than men. This really put the impact of sex on diagnosis and treatment of psychiatric disorders on the map. The current study examined what ADHD and ASD look like in girls and women, which female-specific issues are at play, and which sex-differences in core symptoms are seen. The overall aim was to investigate the female side, after so many years of only taking a male view. A lot of things can be said about female ADHD/ASD that are true, but what is mainly true is this: the picture of ADHD and ASD in girls and women is incredibly complex. Most of the wealth of information we have about these disorders is based on males, starting at the very core: the core diagnostic symptoms, agreed on after years of careful examination of.. boys. So there is a lot we have learned, but much more we still do not know. This thesis is a starting point from where to move forward, initiating a more sex-balanced view of ADHD and ASD.
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
Awarding Institution
  • University of Groningen
  • Tucha, Oliver, Supervisor
  • Groen, Yvonne, Co-supervisor
  • Fuermaier, Anselm, Co-supervisor
Award date30-Sept-2021
Place of Publication[Groningen]
Print ISBNs978-94-6416-751-1
Publication statusPublished - 2021


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