Current status of cognitive behavioral therapy for adult attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder

Laura E. Knouse, Steven A. Safren

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

98 Scopus citations


Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a valid and impairing psychological disorder that persists into adulthood in a majority of cases and is associated with chronic functional impairment and increased rates of comorbidity. Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) approaches for this disorder have emerged recently, and available evidence from open and randomized controlled trials suggests that these approaches are promising in producing significant symptom reduction. A conceptual model of how CBT may work for ADHD is reviewed along with existing efficacy studies. A preliminary comparison of effect sizes across intervention packages suggests that targeted learning and practice of specific behavioral compensatory strategies may be a critical active ingredient in CBT for adult ADHD. The article concludes with a discussion of future directions and critical questions that must be addressed in this area of clinical research.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)497-509
Number of pages13
JournalPsychiatric Clinics of North America
Issue number3
StatePublished - Sep 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Adults
  • Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder
  • Cognitive behavioral therapy
  • Psychosocial treatment
  • Treatment outcome

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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