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Outcome Evaluation of a Brief Group Intervention for Avoidant Personality Disorder.

Outcome Evaluation of a Brief Group Intervention for Avoidant Personality Disorder.

This paper reports on the effectiveness of a brief cognitive-behavioural group therapy intervention for over 50 clients who met DSM -IV criteria for Avoidant Personality Disorder. All clients had initially been offered at least three individual therapy sessions prior to joining a “Taking a Step Forward Group” which typically varied between six and ten therapy sessions.

The group strongly focused on exposure to challenging situations related to social anxiety and avoidance. Measures used at the commencement and conclusion of the group intervention included the Social Avoidance and Distress Scale, the Fear of Negative Evaluation Scale, the Social Phobia Scale, the Social Interaction and Anxiety Scale, SUDS and self-efficacy ratings of a challenging target situation, the Beck Anxiety Inventory and the Beck Depression Inventory.

Based on outcome data, qualitative feedback from clients and clinical observation s, this paper highlights the potential utility of such a group intervention for Avoidant Personality Disorder, including key strategies available in a group intervention relative to individual therapy interventions.

Speakers: Chris Mackey
Conference: AACBT

AACBT 2014

Making a Public Health Approach to Parenting Support Really Work.

As the benefits of positive parenting programs become more apparent, there is increasing calls for such programs to be more widely available in the community. Poor reach of existing programs, low father

Transitioning to the ‘Third Wave’ Behaviour Therapies and their Relevance to Self-Care and Resiliency.

The transition to the ‘third wave’ behaviour therapies will be explored mainly with respect to Acceptance and Commitment Therapy (ACT). A broad review and commentary on the current research

Using D-Cycloserine to Augment Exposure Therapy for Children with Specific Phobia.

D-Cycloserine (DCS) is a cognitive enhancing medication believed to “consolidate” fear extinction learning into memory during exposure therapy. This paper examines whether DCS could augment extinction of a specific fear in children. We conducted a double-blind placebo-controlled Randomized Controlled Trial to investigate whether 50mg of DCS can enhance fear extinction of a dog or spider phobia. Thus far, we have recruited 17 children (M age = 9.4 years) who ingested DCS or a placebo prior to receiving a massed session of in vivo exposure. Avoidance was measured using a standardized ten-step Behaviour Approach Tests (BAT), where successive steps increased proximity to the feared stimulus. BATs were conducted at pretreatment, immediately post-treatment and on follow-up one week later to measure return of fear.

Developing and Maintaining Resilient and Effective Therapists: The Role of Supervision.

Providing psychotherapy can be extremely rewarding but can also make a range of different demands on the therapist. These demands may vary as a function of the stage of development as a therapist, the type of caseload, the context in which the therapist works, the volume of work, and the interactions with other situations or events that may be happening elsewhere in the therapist’s professional and personal life. Supervision can have a range of functions, but one important function is supporting the therapist.  Effective supervision is thought to be a key contributor to ensuring not only safe and effective therapy but also to maintaining resourceful and resilient therapists. While other forms of psychotherapy have well established models and traditions of supervision, CBT is relatively lacking in these areas and there is relatively little literature to guide CBT supervision, especially in contrast to the vast literatures that exist for cognitive behaviour therapy.   

Internet delivered CBT: Are particular components and patterns of usage associated with better outcomes?

The field of e-psychology is rapidly expanding, with new Internet and phone-based programs regularly becoming available for an increasing variety of mental health issues. There is a strong evidence base supporting Internet delivered psychological interventions, but less is known about particular program components or patterns of usage that are most impactful and thus associated with better outcomes.

Development of an optimised, multi-disciplinary intervention for chronic fatigue states.

Medically-unexplained fatigue states are prevalent and often disabling in the general population. These include chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) and post-cancer fatigue (PCF). These syndromes are characterised by debilitating fatigue, neurocognitive difficulties, muscle pain as well as sleep -wake cycle and mood disturbance. A growing evidence base suggests that a multi-disciplinary intervention incorporating cognitive -behavioural therapy (CBT), activity pacing, and graded exercise therapy (GET) provides the most promising current treatment for reducing symptoms and improving functional status.

Anorexia Nervosa: Intrapersonal, Interpersonal, both, or it depends?

The aim was to investigate the contributions of intrapersonal and interpersonal processes to eating disorders symptomatology in anorexia nervosa. Thematic analysis was used to investigate the interpersonal experiences of adolescent girls during inpatient treatment of anorexia nervosa. In a quantitative study, findings from the qualitative study informed hypotheses, development of items for a self-report questionnaire and selection of validated questionnaires to assess eating disorders symptomatology, perfectionism and aspects of interpersonal functioning in women with anorexia nervosa and non-clinical female comparisons.