Recent developments in the conceptualization of externalizing spectrum disorders, including attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, conduct disorder, antisocial personality disorder, and substance use disorders, suggest common genetic and neural substrates. Despite this, neither shared vulnerabilities nor their implications for developmental models of externalizing conduct are captured by prevailing nosologic and diagnostic systems, such as the DSM-5.
The Oxford Handbook of Externalizing Spectrum Disorders is the first book of its kind to capture the developmental psychopathology of externalizing spectrum disorders by examining causal factors across levels of analysis and developmental epochs, while departing from the categorical perspective. World renowned experts on externalizing psychopathology demonstrate how shared genetic and neural vulnerabilities predispose to trait impulsivity, a highly heritable personality construct that is often shaped by adverse environments into increasingly intractable forms of externalizing conduct across development. Consistent with contemporary models of almost all forms of psychopathology, the Handbook emphasizes the importance of neurobiological vulnerability and environmental risk interactions in the expression of externalizing behavior across the lifespan. The volume concludes with an integrative, ontogenic process model of externalizing psychopathology in which diverse equifinal and multifinal pathways to disorder are specified.