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01-03-2014 | Uitgave 1/2014

Journal of Rational-Emotive & Cognitive-Behavior Therapy 1/2014

Addressing Barriers to Change in the Treatment of Childhood Obsessive Compulsive Disorder

Journal of Rational-Emotive & Cognitive-Behavior Therapy > Uitgave 1/2014
Tara S. Peris, John Piacentini


Although considerable evidence supports the use of cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) for the treatment of childhood obsessive compulsive disorder, large numbers of youth fail to respond and clinical remission is often elusive. Poor family functioning frequently is implicated as an obstacle for youth undergoing CBT, with features such as symptom accommodation, family conflict, and blame known to attenuate outcomes. These features are common in child and adolescent obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) and they may pose particular challenges for exposure-based treatments. Nonetheless, interventions that focus specifically on family functioning have, to date, been limited. This paper reviews the literature on family features associated with childhood OCD and discusses their links to treatment outcome. It then describes the development of a brief family intervention tailored to address the needs of highly distressed families of youth with OCD in the service of improving individual child CBT outcomes. Preliminary pilot data are presented and clinical implications are discussed.

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