Neurobiological disturbances in youth with childhood trauma and in youth with conduct disorder

Deborah S. Lipschitz, Charles A. Morgan, Steven M. Southwick

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

22 Scopus citations


Traumatized children often present with symptoms of behavioral dyscontrol (aggression, impulsivity, and hyperactivity). There is some symptom overlap between childhood PTSD and the disruptive behavioral spectrum disorders (ADHD, ODD, CD). To date, there are two separate and emerging bodies of literature that describe underlying neurobiological abnormalities in traumatized youth and in youth with conduct disorder/juvenile delinquency. In this article we first review and contrast some of the neurobiological mechanisms associated with disordered arousal (these include basal cortisol and cortisol reactivity to stress, psychophysiological parameters, and catecholamine studies) in each of these two groups. Next, we attempt to integrate some of these neurobiological findings and make recommendations for future studies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)149-174
Number of pages26
JournalJournal of Aggression, Maltreatment and Trauma
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2002
Externally publishedYes


  • Disordered arousal
  • PTSD
  • conduct disroder
  • trauma


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