Article

Metacognitive therapy in people with a schizophrenia spectrum diagnosis and medication resistant symptoms: A feasibility study

Journal of Behavior Therapy and Experimental Psychiatry (Impact Factor: 2.23). 12/2013; 45(2):280-284. DOI: 10.1016/j.jbtep.2013.11.003
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) for psychosis has been shown to be effective, but there are recent suggestions that it is less efficacious than initially thought. Metacognitive therapy (MCT), which focuses on metacognitive mechanisms, has led to positive results in other disorders, but has yet to be evaluated in people with schizophrenia spectrum diagnoses. This study evaluates the feasibility of MCT for people with psychotic disorders.
Ten participants with schizophrenia spectrum disorders received up to 12 sessions of MCT in an open trial. Outcomes included psychiatric symptoms measured using the PANSS, at baseline, 9 months (end of treatment) and at 12 months (follow-up), as well as dimensions of hallucinations and delusions, emotional dysfunction, self-rated recovery, social functioning and metacognitive beliefs.
T-tests and Wilcoxon's signed ranks tests revealed significant beneficial effects on several outcomes at end-of-treatment and follow-up. Cohen's d effect sizes were moderate to large (for PANSS total, d = 1.0 at end of treatment; d = 0.95 at follow-up). A response rate analysis found 50% and 40% of participants achieved at least a 25% reduction in PANSS total scores by end of therapy and follow-up, respectively. Exploratory analyses revealed that metacognitive beliefs significantly changed over treatment and follow-up periods.
This study had no control group and was not randomised; therefore, it is likely that effect sizes were inflated.
This study provides preliminary evidence that MCT is a feasible treatment for people with psychosis. An adequately powered randomised controlled trial is warranted.

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    • "The provision of normalizing information about the common nature of paranoid beliefs (Freeman et al. 2006) may help patients to re-evaluate their negative beliefs about their paranoid thoughts being uncontrollable and dangerous. Similarly, it is possible that metacognitive therapies based on the S-REF model may be helpful for people with psychosis and those at high risk, and there is preliminary evidence to support this suggestion (Morrison et al. 2014). "
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    • "Intervention is aimed towards establishing new ways of relating to negative thoughts and beliefs, by modifying metacognitive beliefs that give rise to obstructive patterns of thinking (Wells 2011). It has recently been shown as an effective therapy in disorders such as; psychosis (Morrison et al. 2014), GAD (Hjemdal, Hagen & Nordahl 2013), body dysmorphic disorder (Rabiei et al. 2011) and the reduction of student anxiety (Valizade et al. 2013). MCT may be a more effective form of treatment for those with SAD, as it would directly focus on modifying the mechanisms for maintaining this disorder. "
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