What Does Risperidone Add to Parent Training and Stimulant for Severe Aggression in Child Attention-Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder?

Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (Impact Factor: 7.26). 01/2014; 53(1):47-60.e1. DOI: 10.1016/j.jaac.2013.09.022
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Although combination pharmacotherapy is common in child and adolescent psychiatry, there has been little research evaluating it. The value of adding risperidone to concurrent psychostimulant and parent training (PT) in behavior management for children with severe aggression was tested.
One hundred sixty-eight children 6 to 12 years old (mean age 8.89 ± 2.01 years) with severe physical aggression were randomized to a 9-week trial of PT, stimulant (STIM), and placebo (Basic treatment; n = 84) or PT, STIM, and risperidone (Augmented treatment; n = 84). All had diagnoses of attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder and oppositional-defiant disorder (n = 124) or conduct disorder (n = 44). Children received psychostimulant (usually Osmotic Release Oral System methylphenidate) for 3 weeks, titrated for optimal effect, while parents received PT. If there was room for improvement at the end of week 3, placebo or risperidone was added. Assessments included parent ratings on the Nisonger Child Behavior Rating Form (Disruptive-Total subscale was the primary outcome) and Antisocial Behavior Scale; blinded clinicians rated change on the Clinical Global Impressions scale.
Compared with Basic treatment (PT + STIM [44.8 ± 14.6 mg/day] + placebo [1.88 mg/day ± 0.72]), Augmented treatment (PT + STIM [46.1 ± 16.8 mg/day] + risperidone [1.65 mg/day ± 0.75]) showed statistically significant improvement on the Nisonger Child Behavior Rating Form Disruptive-Total subscale (treatment-by-time interaction, p = .0016), the Nisonger Child Behavior Rating Form Social Competence subscale (p = .0049), and Antisocial Behavior Scale Reactive Aggression subscale (p = .01). Clinical Global Impressions scores were substantially improved for the 2 groups but did not discriminate between treatments (Clinical Global Impressions-Improvement score ≤2, 70% for Basic treatment versus 79% for Augmented treatment). Prolactin elevations and gastrointestinal upset occurred more with Augmented treatment; other adverse events differed modestly from Basic treatment; weight gain in the Augmented treatment group was minor.
Risperidone provided moderate but variable improvement in aggressive and other seriously disruptive child behaviors when added to PT and optimized stimulant treatment. Clinical trial registration information-Treatment of Severe Childhood Aggression (The TOSCA Study), URL:, unique identifier: NCT00796302.

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    • "Specifically, we include parent management training (PMT) and cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) because these modalities have received extensive empirical support as stand-alone interventions that are provided in the format of outpatient psychotherapy (Sukhodolsky et al. 2004; Dretzke et al. 2009). There is also evidence that these behavioral interventions can be helpful in conjunction with medication management for severe aggression (Aman et al. 2014) and as part of multimodal interventions for serious conduct problems that address multiple risk factors (Sukhodolsky and Ruchkin 2006). First, we provide an overview of anger/irritability and aggression as the treatment targets of behavioral interventions followed by a discussion of the general principles and techniques of these treatment modalities. "
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    DESCRIPTION: Review of behavioral interventions for anger, irritability and aggression in children and adolescents
  • Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry 01/2014; 53(1):17-20. DOI:10.1016/j.jaac.2013.10.007 · 7.26 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Maladaptive aggression in adolescents is an increasing public health concern. Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT) is one of the most common and promising treatments of aggression. However, there is a lack of information on predictors of treatment response regarding CBT. Therefore, a meta-analysis was performed examining the role of predictors on treatment response of CBT. Twenty-five studies were evaluated (including 2,302 participants; 1,580 boys and 722 girls), and retrieved through searches on PubMed, PsycINFO and EMBASE. Effect sizes were calculated for studies that met inclusion criteria. Study population differences and specific CBT characteristics were examined for their explanatory power. There was substantial variation across studies in design and outcome variables. The meta-analysis showed a medium treatment effect for CBT to reduce aggression (Cohen'd = 0.50). No predictors of treatment response were found in the meta-analysis. Only two studies did examine whether proactive versus reactive aggression could be a moderator of treatment outcome, and no effect was found of this subtyping of aggression. These study results suggest that CBT is effective in reducing maladaptive aggression. Furthermore, treatment setting and duration did not seem to influence treatment effect, which shows the need for development of more cost-effective and less-invasive interventions. More research is needed on moderators of outcome of CBT, including proactive versus reactive aggression. This requires better standardization of design, predictors, and outcome measures across studies.
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