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Logo of bmcpsycBioMed Centralsearchsubmit a manuscriptregisterthis articleBMC Psychiatry
BMC Psychiatry. 2011; 11: 116.
Published online Jul 25, 2011. doi:  10.1186/1471-244X-11-116
PMCID: PMC3155481
Cognitive behaviour therapy in medication-treated adults with ADHD and persistent Symptoms: A randomized controlled trial
Brynjar Emilsson,1,2 Gisli Gudjonsson,1 Jon F Sigurdsson,2 Gisli Baldursson,3 Emil Einarsson,2 Halldora Olafsdottir,2 and Susan Youngcorresponding author1
1King's College London, Institute of Psychiatry, De Crespigny Park, London, UK
2Mental Health Services, Landspitali - The National University Hospital of Iceland, Hringbraut, Reykjavik, Iceland
3Child- and Adolescent Psychiatry, Landspitali - The National University Hospital of Iceland, Dalbraut 12, Reykjavik, Iceland
corresponding authorCorresponding author.
Brynjar Emilsson: brynjare/at/; Gisli Gudjonsson: gisli.gudjonsson/at/; Jon F Sigurdsson: jonfsig/at/; Gisli Baldursson: gislib/at/; Emil Einarsson: emile/at/; Halldora Olafsdottir: haldola/at/; Susan Young: susan.young/at/
Received March 14, 2011; Accepted July 25, 2011.
Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in adulthood is not fully treated by psychopharmacological treatment alone. The main aim of the current study was to evaluate a newly developed cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) based group programme, the Reasoning and Rehabilitation for ADHD Youths and Adults (R&R2ADHD), using a randomized controlled trial.
54 adults with ADHD already receiving psychopharmacological treatment were randomly allocated to an experimental (CBT/MED) treatment condition (n = 27) and a 'treatment as usual' (TAU/MED) control condition (n = 27) that did not receive the CBT intervention. The outcome measures were obtained before treatment (baseline), after treatment and at three month follow-up and included ADHD symptoms and impairments rated by independent assessors, self-reported current ADHD symptoms, and comorbid problems.
The findings suggested medium to large treatment effects for ADHD symptoms, which increased further at three month follow-up. Additionally, comorbid problems also improved at follow-up with large effect sizes.
The findings give support for the effectiveness of R&R2ADHD in reducing ADHD symptoms and comorbid problems, an improving functions associated with impairment. The implications are that the benefits of R&R2ADHD are multifaceted and that combined psychopharmacological and CBT based treatments may add to and improve pharmacological interventions.
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