A randomized controlled trial of group cognitive-behavioral therapy vs. enhanced supportive therapy for auditory hallucinations

David L. Penn, Piper S. Meyer, Elizabeth Evans, R. J. Wirth, Karen Cai, Margaret Burchinal

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

85 Scopus citations

Abstract

There has been little research examining group cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) for schizophrenia, especially compared to an active control treatment. The purpose of this study was to investigate the effectiveness of group CBT for auditory hallucinations compared to an enhanced supportive therapy (ST). Sixty five participants with schizophrenia spectrum disorders and persistent hallucinations were randomly assigned to group CBT or enhanced group ST. Primary outcomes focused on beliefs about voices and global auditory hallucinations severity. Secondary outcomes included psychotic symptoms, self-esteem, social functioning, insight, depression, and hospitalization. Controlling for baseline levels, these outcomes were evaluated across post-treatment, 3 month and 12 month follow-ups. Participants who received enhanced ST were less likely to both resist voices and to rate them as less malevolent through 12-month follow-up relative to participants who received CBT. Group CBT was associated with lower general and total symptom scores on the PANSS through 12-month-followup relative to participants who received enhanced ST. Outcomes improved through 12-month follow-up in both therapy groups, with enhanced ST having more specific impact on auditory hallucinations, and CBT impacting general psychotic symptoms.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)52-59
Number of pages8
JournalSchizophrenia Research
Volume109
Issue number1-3
DOIs
StatePublished - Apr 2009
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Support for the study was provided by a treatment trials grant from the Stanley Foundation, # 04T-489, to DLP.

Keywords

  • Auditory hallucinations
  • Cognitive-behavioral therapy
  • Schizophrenia

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