Cognitive-behavioral family treatment of childhood obsessive-compulsive disorder: a controlled trial.
OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the relative efficacy of (1) individual cognitive-behavioral family-based therapy (CBFT); (2) group CBFT; and (3) a waitlist control group in the treatment of childhood obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD). METHOD: This study, conducted at a university clinic in Brisbane, Australia, involved 77 children and adolescents with OCD who were randomized to individual CBFT, group CBFT, or a 4- to 6-week waitlist control condition. Children were assessed before and after treatment and at 3 months and 6 months following the completion of treatment using diagnostic interviews, symptom severity interviews, and self-report measures. Parental distress, family functioning, sibling distress, and levels of accommodation to OCD demands were also assessed. Active treatment involved a manualized 14-week cognitive-behavioral protocol, with parental and sibling components. RESULTS: By an evaluable patient analysis, statistically and clinically significant pretreatment-to-posttreatment change occurred in OCD diagnostic status and severity across both individual and group CBFT, with no significant differences in improvement ratings between these conditions. There were no significant changes across measures for the waitlist condition. Treatment gains were maintained up to 6 months of follow-up. CONCLUSIONS: Contrary to previous findings and expectations, group CBFT is as effective in reducing OCD symptoms for children and adolescents as individual treatment. Findings support the efficacy and durability of CBFT in treating childhood OCD.
Barrett, P; Healy-Farrell, L; March, JS
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