Efficacy of behavioral experiments in cognitive therapy for social anxiety disorder: study protocol for a randomized controlled trial

  • Background: While the efficacy of cognitive therapy (CT) has been well established for social anxiety disorder (SAD) in several randomized controlled trials, there are still large differences between trials with respect to effect sizes. The present study investigates the question of whether enhanced training and the use of behavioral experiments (BEs) increases the efficacy of traditional CT, based on verbal methods of cognitive restructuring. Methods/design: A mixed within/between conditions design will be applied, with therapists and patients being randomly allocated to one of two conditions: (1) training of CT plus BEs, (2) training of CT “as usual”. Sixty patients with the primary diagnosis of SAD will be recruited and treated in the outpatient clinic of the Department of Psychology, University of Frankfurt. To ensure adherence to therapist protocols, all therapists will be trained and supervised by the project coordinators. In addition, videotaped treatment sessions will be independently evaluated to guarantee both adherence to protocols and the quality of the intervention. Treatment effects will be assessed by independent SAD symptom ratings using the Liebowitz Social Anxiety Scale as the primary outcome measure and self-report measures as secondary outcome measures. Discussion: The present cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) trial will be the first to clarify the contribution of BEs to the efficacy of CT in a randomized controlled design. Study results are relevant to clinical training and implementation of evidence-based treatments. Trial registration: German Clinical Trials Register International Clinical Trials Registry Platform (ICTRP) identifier: DRKS00014349. Trial status: recruiting.
Author:Celina Clément, Jihong Lin, Ulrich StangierORCiDGND
Parent Title (English):Trials
Publisher:BioMed Central Ltd
Place of publication:London [u. a.]
Document Type:Article
Date of Publication (online):2019/12/19
Date of first Publication:2019/12/19
Publishing Institution:Universitätsbibliothek Johann Christian Senckenberg
Release Date:2020/05/16
Tag:Behavioral experiment; Cognitive behavioral therapy; Outcome; Social anxiety disorder; Social phobia; Treatment
Page Number:11
First Page:1
Last Page:11
© The Author(s). 2019 Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons license, and indicate if changes were made. The Creative Commons Public Domain Dedication waiver (http://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/) applies to the data made available in this article, unless otherwise stated.
Institutes:Psychologie und Sportwissenschaften / Psychologie
Dewey Decimal Classification:6 Technik, Medizin, angewandte Wissenschaften / 61 Medizin und Gesundheit / 610 Medizin und Gesundheit
Open-Access-Publikationsfonds:Psychologie und Sportwissenschaften
Licence (German):License LogoCreative Commons - Namensnennung 4.0