Drug and Alcohol Dependence, 1998; 49:225-237.
Substance-dependent, conduct disordered adolescent males: severity of diagnosis predicts 2-year outcome.
Crowley, T. J., Mikulich S. K., Macdonald, M., Young, S. E., & Zerbe, G. O.
This study followed a group of males aged 13-19 years who received residential treatment for comorbid conduct disorder (CD) and substance use disorder (SUD). At intake, nearly all had DSM-III-R substance dependence and CD with considerable violence and criminality. The 2-year follow-ups revealed improvements in criminality, CD, depression and attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), but substance use remained largely unchanged. Various aspects of conduct, crime and substance outcomes at 2 years were predicted by intake measures of intensity of substance involvement, and by CD severity and onset age, but not by severity of either ADHD or depression, nor by treatment duration. Earlier CD onset, more severe CD, and more drug dependence predicted worse outcomes, supporting the validity of these diagnoses in adolescents.