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Cognitive-Behavioral Treatment of Gambling (CBT/CM)

The safety and scientific validity of this study is the responsibility of the study sponsor and investigators. Listing a study does not mean it has been evaluated by the U.S. Federal Government. Read our disclaimer for details. Identifier: NCT00118391
Recruitment Status : Completed
First Posted : July 11, 2005
Last Update Posted : July 1, 2013
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
Information provided by:
UConn Health

Brief Summary:

This study will determine the effectiveness of cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) and contingency management (CM) in reducing gambling behaviors and other related problems in pathological gambling.

Study hypothesis: Participants who receive CBT and CM will attend more treatment sessions and show better outcomes than those who receive CBT alone.

Condition or disease Intervention/treatment Phase
Gambling Mental Health Behavioral: Cognitive behavior therapy Behavioral: Contingency management Phase 1

Detailed Description:

Pathological gambling has become an increasingly problematic condition in the United States, often causing serious financial, psychological, and public health consequences. In an effort to treat this growing problem, researchers have evaluated numerous therapies; one such therapy is CBT. CBT has been shown to improve pathological gambling outcomes. However, evidence suggests that adding CM to CBT could result in even more improved outcomes. This study will compare the effectiveness of CBT and CM with that of CBT alone in reducing pathological gambling.

This study will last 12 months. Participants will be randomly assigned to receive either CBT and CM or CBT alone for 8 weeks. CBT will focus on reducing gambling urges and helping patients develop alternative behaviors to gambling. CM will focus on encouraging patients to avoid gambling. Participants in the CBT and CM group will receive voucher incentives for completing homework assignments and engaging in non-gambling social activities. The vouchers will allow participants to take part in non-gambling activities of their choice. Changes in gambling activities and problems will be assessed with self-report scales and interviews at study start and at Weeks 10, 24, and 52.

Participants will be asked to identify at least one person who knows about their gambling and will have regular contact with them over the 12 months of the study. This person will be interviewed at study start and at Months 2, 6, and 12. Contact persons will be asked about participants' gambling behaviors, personal relationships, legal problems, use of health care and mental health services, and how the participant can be contacted if he or she moves.

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Study Type : Interventional  (Clinical Trial)
Enrollment : 120 participants
Allocation: Randomized
Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment
Masking: None (Open Label)
Primary Purpose: Treatment
Official Title: Enhanced Cognitive Behavior Therapy for the Treatment of Pathological Gambling
Study Start Date : November 2002
Actual Primary Completion Date : October 2005
Actual Study Completion Date : October 2005

Resource links provided by the National Library of Medicine

Intervention Details:
  • Behavioral: Cognitive behavior therapy
    Receive 8 50-minute sessions of one-on-one cognitive behavioral therapy
  • Behavioral: Contingency management
    Receive vouchers that can be spent on rewards for completing activities that support abstinence from gambling

Primary Outcome Measures :
  1. Addiction Severity Index (ASI) gambling severity scores
  2. amount spent gambling per gambling episode
  3. longest period of non-gambling
  4. days until first gambling episode
  5. percent of days gambling
  6. proportion meeting diagnostic criteria
  7. number of treatment sessions attended

Secondary Outcome Measures :
  1. Psychosocial functioning

Information from the National Library of Medicine

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, Learn About Clinical Studies.

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Ages Eligible for Study:   18 Years and older   (Adult, Older Adult)
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   No

Inclusion Criteria:

  • Diagnosis of pathological gambling
  • At least 1 gambling episode within 30 days prior to study entry
  • Able to read English at a 5th grade level
  • Willing and able to comply with all study requirements

Exclusion Criteria:

  • Uncontrolled psychiatric conditions

Information from the National Library of Medicine

To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the contact information provided by the sponsor.

Please refer to this study by its identifier (NCT number): NCT00118391

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United States, Connecticut
University of Connecticut Health Center
Farmington, Connecticut, United States, 06030
Sponsors and Collaborators
UConn Health
National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH)
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Principal Investigator: Nancy M. Petry, PhD UConn Health
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Responsible Party: Nancy Petry, PhD, University of Connecticut Health Center Identifier: NCT00118391    
Other Study ID Numbers: R01MH060417-02 ( U.S. NIH Grant/Contract )
R01MH060417-02 ( U.S. NIH Grant/Contract )
First Posted: July 11, 2005    Key Record Dates
Last Update Posted: July 1, 2013
Last Verified: June 2013
Keywords provided by UConn Health:
Pathological Gambling
Additional relevant MeSH terms:
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Disruptive, Impulse Control, and Conduct Disorders
Mental Disorders