Parent-Augmented Cognitive Behavioral Therapy to Treat Children With Specific Phobias

This study has been completed.
Sponsor:
Collaborator:
Information provided by (Responsible Party):
Thomas H. Ollendick, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier:
NCT00509951
First received: July 30, 2007
Last updated: June 6, 2013
Last verified: June 2013
  Purpose

This study will compare the effectiveness of two types of cognitive behavioral therapy, one-session exposure treatment and family-enhanced one-session exposure treatment, in treating children with specific phobias.


Condition Intervention
Anxiety Disorders
Specific Phobia
Behavioral: One-session exposure treatment
Behavioral: Augmented one-session exposure treatment

Study Type: Interventional
Study Design: Allocation: Randomized
Endpoint Classification: Efficacy Study
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: Open Label
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Augmented Treatment of Specific Phobias in Children

Resource links provided by NLM:


Further study details as provided by Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University:

Primary Outcome Measures:
  • Anxiety Disorders Interview Schedule for DSM-IV: Presence of Specific Phobia [ Time Frame: Measured at Year 1 ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]
  • Clinical Global Impression: Severity of Specific Phobia [ Time Frame: Measured at Year 1 ] [ Designated as safety issue: No ]

Enrollment: 154
Study Start Date: July 2007
Study Completion Date: May 2012
Primary Completion Date: May 2012 (Final data collection date for primary outcome measure)
Arms Assigned Interventions
Active Comparator: 1
One-session exposure treatment (OST)
Behavioral: One-session exposure treatment
Participants receiving OST will attend one extended treatment session, lasting up to 3 hours in duration. During this session, the child will be taught a number of cognitive and behavioral skills to deal effectively with the feared situation or object. The child will also be exposed to the feared situation or object in a highly structured, safe, and controlled manner.
Experimental: 2
Family-enhanced (augmented) OST
Behavioral: Augmented one-session exposure treatment
Family-enhanced OST (augmented OST) involves the parents of affected children and provides the parents with strategies to assist their children in overcoming phobias. Participants receiving augmented OST will attend the same type of extended treatment session, but, in addition, their parent or guardian will attend a 3-hour session.
Other Name: Family-enhanced OST

Detailed Description:

A specific phobia is a fear of a particular object or situation. For many children, phobias result in considerable academic difficulties, social and personal distress, and interference in day-to-day activities. Physical symptoms typically accompany the intense anxiety caused by a specific phobia and may include blushing, profuse sweating, trembling, nausea, and difficulty talking. Phobias can persist a lifetime and may lead to other adult anxiety, mood, and substance use disorders. One-session exposure treatment (OST), a form of cognitive behavior therapy, has been considered a rapid and effective treatment for adults with a variety of specific phobias. Upward of 75 to 80% of adults treated with OST were considered diagnoses free following treatment. OST has proven useful in treating some children with specific phobias but not all. It is possible that parental factors may affect whether a child continues to experience a phobia and how well a child responds to treatment. For example, parents who are overly protective or have a phobia themselves may prevent their child from overcoming a specific phobia. Family-enhanced OST (augmented OST) involves the parents of affected children and provides the parents with strategies to assist their children in overcoming phobias. This study will compare the effectiveness of OST and augmented OST in treating children with specific phobias. This study will also evaluate how parental factors influence the expression and maintenance of phobias in children.

Participants in this study will be randomly assigned to receive OST or augmented OST. Participants receiving OST will attend one extended treatment session, lasting up to 3 hours in duration. During this session, the child will be taught a number of cognitive and behavioral skills to deal effectively with the feared situation or object. The child will also be exposed to the feared situation or object in a highly structured, safe, and controlled manner. This treatment will only be delivered to the child and will not involve a parent or guardian. Participants receiving augmented OST will attend the same type of extended treatment session, but, in addition, their parent or guardian will attend a 3-hour session. During this session, parents will first be educated on specific phobias, including why phobias occur and how they are maintained over time. Next, parents will observe their child being treated from behind a one-way mirror for about 1 hour. During this time, a therapist will explain what the child's therapist is doing and discuss ways for parents to implement the treatment at home. Parents will then be asked to join their child and the therapist for the last hour of the child's session to assist the therapist with treatment.

Outcomes will be assessed for all participants immediately after treatment and at 1-, 6-, and 12-month follow-up evaluations during which the presence of specific phobias will be measured. Parents will also be asked to provide information about their child's school grades and school attendance for the year prior to participating in the study and up to 1 year after the child completes the treatment. The child's teacher may be asked to complete a questionnaire regarding the child's behavior in school. All of the information collected will help to determine how much progress each child has made as a result of treatment.

  Eligibility

Ages Eligible for Study:   7 Years to 14 Years
Genders Eligible for Study:   Both
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No
Criteria

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Enrolled in a regular classroom setting
  • Possess at least an average intellectual ability as documented by school ability records
  • Meets DSM-IV criteria for specific phobia and scores 4 or above on the clinician severity rating scale of the ADIS-C/P
  • A parent or caregiver agrees to participate in the treatment
  • Parent or guardian willing to provide informed consent

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Significant medical disorder (e.g., cerebral palsy, deafness) that would interfere with study participation
  • Already receiving psychological treatment (with the exception of minimal intervention in the school setting)
  • Currently receiving psychotropic medication for a psychological disorder, with the exception of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). If the child is receiving stimulant or other medication for management of ADHD symptoms, it must be documented that pharmacological treatment has been stabilized.
  • Blood-injection-injury type of specific phobia
  Contacts and Locations
Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the Contacts provided below. For general information, see Learn About Clinical Studies.

Please refer to this study by its ClinicalTrials.gov identifier: NCT00509951

Locations
United States, Virginia
Child Study Center
Blacksburg, Virginia, United States, 24060
Sponsors and Collaborators
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
Investigators
Principal Investigator: Thomas H. Ollendick, PhD Department of Psychology, Virginia Tech
  More Information

Additional Information:
No publications provided

Responsible Party: Thomas H. Ollendick, University Distinguished Professor, Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
ClinicalTrials.gov Identifier: NCT00509951     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: R01 MH074777, R01MH074777, DSIR 84-CTS
Study First Received: July 30, 2007
Last Updated: June 6, 2013
Health Authority: United States: Federal Government

Keywords provided by Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University:
Neuroses
Evidence-Based Treatment
Clinical Investigation
Young Patients
Phobic Disorders
Fear
Phobias

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Anxiety Disorders
Phobic Disorders
Mental Disorders

ClinicalTrials.gov processed this record on July 29, 2014