Comprehensive versus matched psychosocial treatment in the MTA study: conceptual and empirical issues.
Addressed some factual inaccuracies and presented alternative positions on key issues raised in the article by Greene and Ablon (this issue) on the question, "What does the Multimodal Treatment Study (MTA) tell us about effective psychosocial treatment for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)?" The Greene and Ablon critique does not present for the reader's consideration the full range of findings from the MTA study, notably those most relevant to psychosocial treatment, and articulates a theoretical position that effective treatment requires matching treatment to children's assessed needs, an approach not taken in the MTA study. In this article, I present the full range of findings from the MTA study related to psychosocial treatment effects, correct the misperceptions that exist about the study based on limited reviews such as Greene and Ablon's, and review the empirical and experimental design issues that produced the decision by the MTA investigative team to study the effects of intensive, comprehensive psychosocial treatment. I argue that the questions asked by the MTA study about psychosocial treatment were important, relevant, and were addressed well in the MTA study design.
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