Jan F Wiborg

Radboud University Medical Centre (Radboudumc), Nymegen, Gelderland, Netherlands

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Publications (11)31.24 Total impact

  • Jan F Wiborg, Bernd Löwe
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    ABSTRACT: We examined the role of comorbidity in models that use the illness perceptions of patients with somatoform disorders to explain their outcomes. A total of 138 primary care patients with somatoform disorders completed the Patient Health Questionnaire and Brief Illness Perception Questionnaire and rated their general health status. Medical comorbidity was rated by the general practitioner. Patients' illness perceptions were consistently related to their outcomes independent of medical and psychological comorbidity in our models. At the same time, inclusion of comorbidity enhanced our models, revealing differences in the relevance of the specific comorbidity depending on the outcome measure.
    Journal of Health Psychology 12/2013; · 1.88 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Objective To examine rates of suicidality in primary care patients with somatoform disorders and to identify factors that might help to understand and manage active suicidal ideation in these patients.Methods We conducted a cross-sectional study screening 1645 primary care patients. In total, 142 patients fulfilled the criteria for a somatoform disorder. Suicidality and illness perceptions were assessed in these patients.ResultsOf the 142 patients, 23.9% had active suicidal ideation during the previous 6 months; 17.6% had attempted to commit suicide in the past, the majority after onset of the somatoform symptoms. We tested two models with suicidal ideation as a dependent variable. In the first model, comorbid symptoms of depression (odds ratio [OR] = 1.17, 95% confidence interval [CI] = 1.03-1.33) and previous suicide attempts (OR= 3.02, 95% CI = 1.06-8.62) were significantly associated with suicidal ideation. Comorbid symptoms of anxiety did not yield significance. Illness perceptions and age of onset of the symptoms were then added to this model to test the role of somatoform-specific factors in addition to previous factors. In the complete model, comorbid symptoms of depression (OR = 1.15, 95% CI = 1.00-1.32) and dysfunctional illness perceptions (OR = 1.06, 95% CI = 1.01-1.11) were independently associated with active suicidal ideation, whereas the other factors did not yield significance.Conclusions According to our data, suicidality seems to be a substantial problem in primary care patients with somatoform disorders. Dysfunctional illness perceptions may play a vital role in the understanding and management of active suicidal ideation in these patients, in addition to more established factors.
    Psychosomatic Medicine 10/2013; · 4.08 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: OBJECTIVE: To examine suicidal ideation in a sample of German primary care patients. METHODS: We conducted a cross-sectional study and included 1455 primary care patients who visited 1 of 41 general practitioners (GPs) working at 19 different sites. Suicidal ideation and psychopathology were assessed with the Patient Health Questionnaire (PHQ) in an anonymous screening together with health care utilization. RESULTS: One hundred seventy-one (11.8%) of 1455 patients endorsed the suicidal ideation item of the PHQ. These patients were significantly younger, more often female and unmarried, suffered more often from psychopathology and reported more health care utilization than patients without suicidal ideation. Patients with the highest frequency of suicidal ideation also talked more often routinely about psychosocial problems with their GP, used more often medication against their complaints and searched more often for a psychotherapist than other suicidal ideators. Yet, these patients were not more likely to be in psychotherapy at the time of the screening. CONCLUSION: Our data suggest that suicidal ideation is a common phenomenon in primary care, which is independently associated with psychopathology in terms of depression, anxiety and somatoform complaints. Psychosocial support from GPs and medication seem to be easier available for primary care patients with suicidal ideation than psychotherapy, independent of the severity of the suicidal ideation.
    General hospital psychiatry 03/2013; · 2.67 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The aim of our study was to explore whether community-based mental health care centres (MHCs) are able to implement and sustain cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) for chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) with the help of an implementation manual. We monitored the implementation process and treatment outcome data of three Dutch MHCs that implemented or sustained CBT for CFS, one in the context of a stepped care programme. We compared these data with findings of other treatment studies conducted in the context of CBT for CFS. All three MHCs included at least 40 patients with dropout rates between 15% and 35% from intention-to-treat to second assessment. Effect sizes ranged between 0.88 and 1.76 for changes in fatigue severity and 0.43 and 1.23 for changes in physical functioning. With one exception, these outcomes were within the range of our benchmark. Contrary to original expectations, we provided additional implementation support to the two MHCs new with CBT for CFS. We concluded that our implementation manual does not seem to substitute external support for team leaders and associated professions during initial implementation of CBT for CFS but may have the potential to make this assistance more efficient. Particular attention should be paid to challenges of implementing stepped care for CFS. Copyright © 2012 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd. KEY PRACTITIONERS MESSAGE: Implementation of CBT for CFS in community-based MHCs was monitored. External support was provided in addition to an implementation manual during initial implementation of CBT for CFS. Participating MHCs were generally capable of successfully implementing and delivering CBT for CFS. Implementation of low-intensity interventions for CFS might better be postponed until therapists have sufficient experience with conventional CBT for CFS.
    Clinical Psychology & Psychotherapy 12/2012; · 2.59 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The purpose of the present study was to develop a treatment model for cognitive behavioral interventions focusing on chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) based on the model of perpetuating factors introduced by Vercoulen et al. [Journal of Psychosomatic Research 1998;45:507-17]. For this purpose, we reanalyzed the data of a previously conducted randomized controlled trial in which a low intensity cognitive behavioral intervention was compared to a waiting list control group. Structural equation modeling was used to test a treatment model in which changes in focusing on symptoms, perceived problems with activity, and sense of control over fatigue were hypothesized to mediate the effect of our intervention on fatigue severity and disability. In the final model, which had a good fit to the data, the effect of treatment was mediated by a decrease in perceived problems with activity and an increase in sense of control over fatigue. Our findings suggest that cognitive behavioral interventions for CFS need to change the illness perception and beliefs of their patients in order to be effective.
    Journal of psychosomatic research 05/2012; 72(5):399-404. · 2.91 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: The purpose of the present study was to explore the role of the therapist in the dissemination of manualized cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) for chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) outside specialized treatment settings. We used the routinely collected outcome data of three community-based mental health care centers (MHCs) which implemented and sustained CBT for CFS during the course of the study. Ten therapists, who all received the same training in CBT for CFS, and 103 patients with CFS were included. Random effects modeling revealed a significant difference in mean post-treatment fatigue between therapists. The effect of the therapist accounted for 21% of the total variance in post-treatment fatigue in our sample. This effect could be explained by the therapists' attitude toward working with evidence-based treatment manuals as well as by the MHC where CBT for CFS was delivered. The context in which CBT for CFS is delivered may play an important role in the accomplishment of established therapy effects outside specialized treatment settings. Due to the small sample size of MHCs and the different implementation scenarios in which they were engaged, our findings should be interpreted as preliminary results which are in need for replication.
    Behaviour Research and Therapy 03/2012; 50(6):393-6. · 3.85 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Persistent fatigue is a long-term adverse effect experienced in about a quarter of patients cured of cancer. It was shown that cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) especially designed for postcancer fatigue is highly effective in reducing severe fatigue. However, it is unclear by what mechanism the fatigue reduction is reached. In many fatigue reduction programs, an increase in physical activity is assumed to reduce fatigue. The purpose of the present study is to determine whether the effect of CBT on fatigue is mediated by an increase in physical activity. Data of a previous randomized controlled trial on the efficacy of CBT for postcancer fatigue were reanalyzed (CBT, n = 41; waiting list condition, n = 42). Actigraphy was used to assess the level of objective physical activity. Cancer survivors were assessed prior as well as after the CBT and waiting list period. The mediation hypothesis was tested according to guidelines of Baron and Kenny. A non-parametric bootstrap approach was used to test statistical significance of the mediation effect. Although CBT effectively reduced postcancer fatigue, no change in level of objective physical activity was found. The mean mediation effect was 1.4% of the total treatment effect. This effect was not significant. The effect of CBT for postcancer fatigue is not mediated by a persistent increase in objective physical activity.
    Supportive Care in Cancer 07/2011; 20(7):1441-7. · 2.09 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) leads to a significant reduction in fatigue severity and impairment in patients with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). The purpose of the present study was to determine whether the effect of CBT for CFS on fatigue and impairment is mediated by a decrease in avoidance behavior and focusing on fatigue. For this purpose, we reanalyzed a randomized controlled trial which was previously conducted to test the efficacy of CBT for CFS. Two hundred nineteen patients completed assessment prior and subsequent to treatment or a control group period. Mediation analysis revealed that a decrease in focusing on fatigue mediated the effect of CBT for CFS on fatigue and impairment. Avoidance of activity and avoidance of aversive stimuli were not significantly changed by treatment and were therefore excluded from mediation analysis. A decrease in the focus on fatigue seems to contribute to the treatment effect of CBT for CFS.
    Journal of psychosomatic research 04/2011; 70(4):306-10. · 2.91 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) is known to reduce fatigue severity in chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS). How this change in symptomatology is accomplished is not yet understood. The purpose of the present study was to determine whether the effect of CBT on fatigue is mediated by an increase in physical activity. Three randomized controlled trials were reanalysed, previously conducted to evaluate the efficacy of CBT for CFS. In all samples, actigraphy was used to assess the level of physical activity prior and subsequent to treatment or a control group period. The mediation hypothesis was analysed according to guidelines of Baron & Kenny [Journal of Personality and Social Psychology (1986)51, 1173-1182]. A non-parametric bootstrap approach was used to test statistical significance of the mediation effect. Although CBT effectively reduced fatigue, it did not change the level of physical activity. Furthermore, changes in physical activity were not related to changes in fatigue. Across the samples, the mean mediation effect of physical activity averaged about 1% of the total treatment effect. This effect did not yield significance in any of the samples. The effect of CBT on fatigue in CFS is not mediated by a persistent increase in physical activity.
    Psychological Medicine 08/2010; 40(8):1281-7. · 5.59 Impact Factor
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    ABSTRACT: Many patients with chronic fatigue syndrome (CFS) seem to experience periods in which they are homebound due to their symptomatology. Despite a growing body of research about CFS, little is known about patients who no longer feel able to leave their homes. The purpose of the present study was to examine whether homebound patients differ from other CFS patients on illness-specific characteristics. Besides experiencing more impairment in daily functioning than participants of an outpatient intervention study, homebound patients were characterised by extremely high levels of daily fatigue, predominant somatic attributions, and pervasively passive activity patterns. The course of symptomatology was similarly stable in both groups. Our findings suggest that homebound patients form a distinct subgroup of CFS patients who might profit from a treatment approach that is tailored to their specific needs. The exploratory nature of this first systematic investigation of homebound CFS patients is stressed, and suggestions for future research are made.
    Psychiatry Research 03/2010; 177(1-2):246-9. · 2.68 Impact Factor
  • J. F. Wiborg, H. Knoop, G. Bleijenberg
    Annals of Family Medicine - ANN FAM MED. 01/2008;