Article

Choosing a control group in effectiveness trials of behavioral drug abuse treatments

Maryhaven Research Institute, Maryhaven, Columbus, OH 43207, USA.
Journal of substance abuse treatment (Impact Factor: 2.9). 07/2009; 37(4):388-97. DOI: 10.1016/j.jsat.2009.05.004
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT Effectiveness trials are an important step in the scientific process of developing and evaluating behavioral treatments. The focus on effectiveness research presents a different set of requirements on the research design when compared with efficacy studies. The choice of a control condition has many implications for a clinical trial's internal and external validity. The purpose of this article was to provide a discussion of the issues involved in choosing a control group for effectiveness trials of behavioral interventions in substance abuse treatment. The authors provide a description of four trial designs and a discussion of the advantages and disadvantages of each.

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Available from: Daniel J Feaster, Aug 29, 2015
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    • "For nonpharmacological interventions, the CONSORT checklist includes additional recommendations for reporting the specific details of the experimental and comparator conditions , including a description of the components of the interventions and any tailoring of the interventions to individual participants, details regarding standardization of the interventions and adherence to the intervention protocols, and how adherence to intervention protocols was assessed. All of these recommendations can be particularly important in alcohol treatment trials in which " treatment as usual " or " standard care " interventions are included as comparison interventions (Brigham et al., 2009), as these approaches may vary substantially across studies. This information is crucial to allow the relative effects of different interventions to be assessed in research syntheses. "
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    • "Note that Design 2 in the original conceptualization (Brigham, Feaster, Wakim, and Dempsey, 2009) has been subdivided into Design 2a and Design 2b, depending on whether the new intervention is an add-on to TAU, or substitutes for some existing component of TAU. "
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