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The central feature of CD (Table 16–2) is a repetitive pattern of behavior that violates the rights of others or major societal rules. There is no one required or pathognomonic behavior for diagnosis but rather a range of acts that by their number, severity, and persistence for at least 12 months define the condition. Although some of the behaviors may be chargeable offenses and result in arrest, the diagnosis of CD should not be confused with the legal term of delinquency. In contrast to the diagnosis of adult antisocial personality disorder, all of the diagnostic criteria for CD are observable, objective behaviors rather than inferred, internal constructs, such as lack of remorse or deceitfulness. Repeated studies have found the CD behaviors to be reliable and valid criteria in identifying those youth at greatest risk for continued antisocial behavior (Loeber et al. 2000). Studies have considered the association of interpersonal callousness and CD and compared their ability to predict later psychopathy, but the relationships are complicated and require further study (Burke et al. 2007).

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Table Reference Number
TABLE 16–2. DSM-IV-TR diagnostic criteria for conduct disorder

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