Objective: We aimed to understand the association between MW frequency and clinical measures, context regulation of MW and group differences in task performance. Method: 27 adults with ADHD and 29 controls performed tasks manipulating demand on working memory and sustained attention, and recorded their MW frequency using probes. Results: A significant association between MW frequency and the clinical measures was demonstrated. Along with increased MW frequency, individuals with ADHD reported decreasing MW frequency during increasing demands on working memory (context regulation), but not on sustained attention (deficient context regulation). Controls, however, maintained continuous task focus across all conditions. Group differences in task performance were no longer significant after adding MW frequency as a covariate. Conclusions: Deficient context regulation during increasing demands on sustained attention suggests that sustained attention deficits may play a more important role in regulation of MW in ADHD. MW frequency might also underpin performance deficits in ADHD.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Attention Disorders
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 9 Aug 2020


  • ADHD
  • MW
  • context regulation
  • working memory
  • sustained attention


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