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Postgrad Med. 2013 Mar;125(2):51-64. doi: 10.3810/pgm.2013.03.2641.

Psychosocial therapy in the treatment of adults with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder.

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  • 1Children's Hospital, Cleveland Clinic Pediatric Behavioral Health, Cleveland, OH 44104, USA.


Optimal management of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) requires a comprehensive treatment approach that reduces symptoms and improves quality of life. Psychosocial therapy, an important adjunct to pharmacotherapy for patients with ADHD, enables patients to improve functional performance across domains of life and maximizes the benefits of symptom reduction achieved via medication. This article evaluates the main types of psychosocial therapies used in the treatment of adult ADHD and discusses treatment goals within the context of skill acquisition and strength optimization. Factors influencing the success of psychosocial therapy and the role of a comprehensive treatment approach are also examined. The sequenced presentation of symptom reduction and skill acquisition plays a key role in coordinating psychosocial therapy and pharmacotherapy in a multimodal strategy for the effective treatment of adult ADHD.

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