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Although effective therapies for social phobia exist, many individuals
refrain from seeking treatment owing to the embarrassment associated with
help-seeking. Internet-based cognitive-behavioural self-help can be an
alternative, but adherence is a problem.
To evaluate a 9-week programme of internet-based therapy designed to
increase treatment adherence by the addition of short weekly telephone
calls, nine in all, with a total duration of 95 min.
In a randomised controlled trial the effects of internet-based cognitive–
behavioural therapy in the treatment group (n=29) were
compared with a waiting-list control group (n=28).
Compared with the control group the treated participants experienced
greater reductions on measures of general and social anxiety avoidance
and depression. Adherence to treatment was high, with 93% finishing the
complete treatment package. One year later all improvements were
This study provides evidence to support the use of internet-based
treatment supplemented by short, weekly telephone calls.
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