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With the purpose of comparing the HPA axis response to TSST-C of children diagnosed with ADHD with that of controls, a first repeated measures ANOVA was conducted.
This research study has been the first with a control group to compare simultaneously the cortisol response to the TSST-C among a group of non-treated children diagnosed with the three diagnostic subtypes of ADHD included in the DSM-IV-TR and without the comorbide presence of neither a conduct nor an oppositional defiant disorder.
In relation to this, and as far as we are concerned, this is the first research study to apply the TSST-C in a sample with an average age of six without observing any response from the HPA axis.
While the formal hypothesis previously introduced as an objective cannot be answered given the absence of reactivity among all participant groups, our results do allow us to state that the ADHD group--in particular children diagnosed with ADHD-HY--presented a significantly reduced cortisol response during the course of a stressful situation (such as the one triggered by the TSST-C) in comparison with children who do not suffer from this disorder or children diagnosed with a different ADHD subtype.
In the second place, the administration of the TSST-C in the morning could have also been affected by the well-known diurnal rhythm of the cortisol levels, with a peak 30 min.
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