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Conduct disorders in childhood and adolescence 

Conduct disorders in childhood and adolescence
Chapter:
Conduct disorders in childhood and adolescence
Author(s):

Stephen Scott

DOI:
10.1093/med/9780199696758.003.0216
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date: 18 August 2019

The term conduct disorder refers to a persistent pattern of antisocial behaviour in which the individual repeatedly breaks social rules and carries out aggressive acts which upset other people. It is the commonest psychiatric disorder of childhood across the world, and the commonest reason for referral to child and adolescent mental health services in Western countries. Antisocial behaviour has the highest continuity into adulthood of all measured human traits except intelligence. A high proportion of children and adolescents with conduct disorder grow up to be antisocial adults with impoverished and destructive lifestyles; a significant minority will develop antisocial personality disorder (psychopathy). The disorder in adolescence is becoming more frequent in Western countries and places a large personal and economic burden on individuals and society.

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