Evaluation of a structured skills training group for adolescents with attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder: a randomized controlled trial Meyer J, Ramklint M, Hallerbäck MU, Lööf M, Isaksson J.
Eur Child Adolesc Psychiatry. 2021 Mar 15.
Commentary* by Dr. Margaret Weiss: An interesting contribution to the sparse literature on psychosocial intervention for adolescents with ADHD.
Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) in adolescence is associated with behavioural, emotional and interpersonal problems, and non-pharmacological treatments targeting these difficulties have been requested.
The objective of this study was to evaluate the effectiveness and acceptance of an age-adapted structured skills training group (SSTG) for adolescents with ADHD. Adolescents (n = 184, ages 15-18 years) with a diagnosis of ADHD were randomly assigned to either the SSTG, which is based on dialectical behavioural therapy, or an active control group based on psychoeducation.
Symptoms of ADHD, behavioural and emotional problems, functional impairment, and health-related outcomes were assessed with self-ratings and parental ratings two weeks before, two weeks after, and six months after treatment.
All participants who completed the pre-treatment measurements (n = 164) were included in the main analyses, which were conducted using a linear mixed model. Our results demonstrated no significant group differences in favour of the SSTG for any of the study outcomes.
A majority of the participants in both groups reported that they had increased their knowledge about ADHD, improved their ability to manage problems related to the diagnosis, and would recommend the treatment to others. We conclude that the SSTG seems to be acceptable for adolescents with ADHD in a clinical context.
However, the treatment was not proved to be more effective or more acceptable than the psychoeducational control intervention.
* Abstracts are selected for their clinical relevance by Dr. Margaret Weiss, Director of Clinical Research, Child Psychiatry, Cambridge Health Alliance, Harvard University. Her commentary reflects her own opinion. It is not approved or necessarily representative of the CADDRA board.