Vocal Emotion Recognition in Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: A Meta-Analysis

Sells, Rohanna, Liversedge, Simon Paul orcid iconORCID: 0000-0002-8579-8546 and Chronaki, Georgia orcid iconORCID: 0000-0001-5146-2510 (2023) Vocal Emotion Recognition in Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder: A Meta-Analysis. Cognition and Emotion . ISSN 0269-9931

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Official URL: https://doi.org/10.1080/02699931.2023.2258590


There is debate within the literature as to whether emotion dysregulation (ED) in Attention-Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) reflects deviant attentional mechanisms (Barkley, 1997; Nigg et al., 2005) or atypical perceptual emotion processing (Shaw et al., 2014; Sonuga-Barke, 2005). Previous reviews have reliably examined the nature of facial, but not vocal, emotion recognition accuracy in ADHD (Bora & Pantelis, 2016). The present meta-analysis quantified vocal emotion recognition (VER) accuracy scores in ADHD and controls using robust variance estimation, gathered from 21 published and unpublished papers. Additional moderator analyses were carried out to determine whether the nature of VER accuracy in ADHD varied depending on emotion type. Findings revealed a medium effect size for the presence of VER deficits in ADHD, and moderator analyses showed VER accuracy in ADHD did not differ due to emotion type. These results support the theories which implicate the role of attentional mechanisms in driving VER deficits in ADHD. However, there is insufficient data within the behavioural VER literature to support the presence of emotion processing atypicalities in ADHD. Future neuro-imaging research could explore the interaction between attention and emotion processing in ADHD, taking into consideration ADHD subtypes and comorbidities.

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