Authors: Henrik Danielsson, Christine Imms, Magnus Ivarsson, Lena Almqvist, Lars-Olov Lundqvist, Gillian King, Liz Adams Lyngbäck, Anna Karin Andersson, Susann Arnell, Patrik Arvidsson, Lilly Augustine, Rob Brooks, Maria Eldh, Lisa Engde, Helena Engkvist, Ingalill Gimbler Berglund, Dido Green, Karina Huus, Charlotte Karlsson, Frida Lygnegård, Linda Sjödin och Mats Granlund


To review the longitudinal trajectories – and the factors influencing their development – of mental health problems in children with neurodevelopmental disabilities. Systematic review methods were employed. Searches of six databases used keywords and MeSH terms related to children with neurodevelopmental disabilities, mental health problems, and longitudinal research. After the removal of duplicates, reviewers independently screened records for inclusion, extracted data (outcomes and influencing factors), and evaluated the risk of bias. Findings were tabulated and synthesized using graphs and a narrative. Searches identified 94,662 unique records, from which 49 publications were included. The median publication year was 2015. Children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder were the most commonly included population in retrieved studies. In almost 50% of studies, trajectories of mental health problems changed by < 10% between the first and last time point. Despite multiple studies reporting longitudinal trajectories of mental health problems, greater conceptual clarity and consideration of the measures included in research is needed, along with the inclusion of a more diverse range of populations of children with neurodevelopmental disabilities.

This reseach is financed by: Swedish Reseach Council