OBJECTIVE: The purpose of this scoping review was to examine the nature and extent of the evidence for the use of a stage theory of adult development, Constructive Developmental Theory (CDT) within healthcare leadership. DESIGN: A systematic methodology was employed, utilising inclusion and exclusion criteria and searching across seven databases. MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Summary of literature in response to three key questions. RESULTS: A Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses - Scoping Reviews (PRISMA-ScR) flow diagram illustrates the study selection process with 154 records screened, 35 full-text articles assessed for eligibility and 7 studies included in the final analysis. Three themes emerged from the data: (1) healthcare as a complex system, (2) complexity of leadership in healthcare, (3) developmental leadership progression in healthcare. CONCLUSIONS: This review highlighted that CDT could provide a roadmap for individual change and adult developmental growth, thereby supporting the opportunity for more complex thinking and perspective taking within healthcare leadership. For the healthcare leader, the benefit of an awareness, understanding and application of CDT, is the potential for an increased capacity for recognising and dealing with complex challenges both personally and professionally. The study protocol is registered with Open Science Framework (OSF).