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Trauma and dissociation may be important factors contributing to the experiences of distressing voice hearing. However, there is scant mention of how to target and treat such processes when working with people with psychosis. This case study reports on an initial attempt to work with dissociation and trauma memories in a person with voices. A single case approach was used, with standardized measures used before, during and after 24 sessions of cognitive therapy, and at 6-month follow-up. In addition, session-by-session measures tracked frequency and distress associated with voices and dissociation. The participant reported significant improvements in terms of reduced frequency and distress of dissociation, and voice hearing, as well as improvement in low mood at the end of treatment. At follow-up there were enduring benefits in terms of dissociation and trauma-related experiences, as well as broad recovery but not of change in voices. This case illustrated the potential benefit of targeting dissociation and exposure to trauma memories in producing general symptom improvement and specific reductions in dissociation and voice hearing at end of treatment.
Befriending allows for control of the non-specific factors of the therapist–patient interaction in psychosocial research. Manualised befriending is at the very least an active placebo and potentially an effective intervention. Befriending now merits increased research attention to determine indications for use and to elucidate mechanisms of action.
There has been limited application of cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) to the treatment of distressing visual hallucinations (VH) in people with psychosis. Preliminary research applying interventions to a novel presenting issue are enhanced by utilizing designs that allow strong inferences to be made about the effect of the intervention. Hence, this study aimed to measure change in appraisal, affect, and behaviour as a consequence of CBT VH, to improve understanding of the process of change. A multiple-baseline experimental single-case design methodology was used with five participants who received a CBT VH treatment package. Participants used daily diary measures to record appraisals, affect, and behaviours related to the distressing VH. Standardized measures were completed at each phase change. Four individuals completed therapy. Formal visual analysis of the data supported by statistical analysis indicated significant changes for appraisal and affect, with replication across three participants. Changes in frequency of VH were reported in two cases. Change was not evident on the standardized measures. This study replicates and extends the findings in showing potential value of CBT VH. Further research should consider alternative methods of capturing behavioural change. Attempts should also be made to replicate across therapists and centres.
Background: Randomized controlled trials have established that cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) is effective in helping people with psychosis, though there is enormous variability in outcome. It is not clear what patient factors contribute to good outcomes. In fact, most studies considering client factors have excluded people with psychosis. It is clinicians who are deciding who is likely to benefit from CBT for psychosis (CBTp), though little is understood in terms of their views on who benefits from CBTp. Aims: This study investigated clinicians’ views on client characteristics that influence outcome in CBTp. Method: A Q-set of 61 client characteristics was developed from a literature search and interviews with clinicians experienced in working with CBT and/or psychosis. Twenty-one participants (familiar with psychosis and CBT through education, profession, practice or knowledge) rated the items based on their importance in effecting a positive outcome, on a forced normal distribution. Results: 21 completed Q-sorts yielded four factors, named as: acceptance and application of the cognitive model; attending to the present; secure base; meaningful active collaboration. Conclusions: Items regarding therapeutic alliance were highly endorsed throughout all factors. Some empirically-based items were not endorsed, although overall, clinician responses were consistent with prior research.
Background: Case conceptualization is assumed to be an important element in cognitive-behavioural therapy (CBT) because it describes and explains clients’ presentations in ways that inform intervention. However, we do not have a good measure of competence in CBT case conceptualization that can be used to guide training and elucidate mechanisms. Aims: The current study addresses this gap by describing the development and preliminary psychometric properties of the Collaborative Case Conceptualization – Rating Scale (CCC-RS; Padesky et al., 2011). The CCC-RS was developed in accordance with the model posited by Kuyken et al. (2009). Method: Data for this study (N = 40) were derived from a larger trial (Wiles et al., 2013) with adults suffering from resistant depression. Internal consistency and inter-rater reliability were calculated. Further, and as a partial test of the scale's validity, Pearson's correlation coefficients were obtained for scores on the CCC-RS and key scales from the Cognitive Therapy Scale – Revised (CTS-R; Blackburn et al., 2001). Results: The CCC-RS showed excellent internal consistency (α = .94), split-half (.82) and inter-rater reliabilities (ICC =.84). Total scores on the CCC-RS were significantly correlated with scores on the CTS-R (r = .54, p < .01). Moreover, the Collaboration subscale of the CCC-RS was significantly correlated (r = .44) with its counterpart of the CTS-R in a theoretically predictable manner. Conclusions: These preliminary results indicate that the CCC-RS is a reliable measure with adequate face, content and convergent validity. Further research is needed to replicate and extend the current findings to other facets of validity.
Currently, there exists a lack of confidence in the computational simulation of multiple body high-speed air delivered systems. Of particular interest is the ability to accurately predict the dispersion pattern of these systems under various deployment configurations. Classical engineering-level methods may not be able to predict these patterns with adequate confidence due primarily to accuracy errors attributable to reduced order modeling. In the current work, a new collision modeling capability has been developed to enable multiple-body proximate-flight simulation in the Loci/CHEM framework. This approach maintains high-fidelity aerodynamics and incorporates six degrees of freedom modeling with collision response, and is well-suited for simulation of a large number of projectiles. The proposed simulation system is intended to capture the strong interaction phase early in the projectile deployment, with subsequent transfer of projectile positions and flight states to the more economical engineering-level methods. Collisions between rigid bodies are modeled using an impulse-based approach with either an iterative propagation method or a simultaneous method. The latter is shown to be more accurate and robust for cases involving multiple simultaneous collisions as it eliminates the need to sort and resolve the collisions sequentially. The implementation of both the collision detection methodology and impact mechanics are described in detail with validation studies to demonstrate the efficiency and accuracy of the developed technologies. The studies chronologically detail the findings for simulating simple impacts and collisions between multiple bodies with aerodynamic interference effects.
Background: Visual hallucinations (VH) are a common experience and can be distressing and disabling, particularly for people suffering from psychotic illness. However, not everyone with visual hallucinations reports the experience to be distressing. Models of VH propose that appraisals of VH as a threat to wellbeing and the use of safety seeking behaviours help maintain the distress. Aims: This study investigated whether people with distressing VH report threat appraisals and use safety behaviours. Method: The study utilized a single group descriptive design, in which 15 participants with psychosis and VH were asked questions in order to assess the content, distress, appraisals, and behaviours associated with visual hallucinations. Results: People who found visual hallucinations distressing (n = 13) held negative appraisals about those hallucinations and specifically saw them as a threat to their physical or psychological wellbeing. They also engaged in safety seeking behaviours that were logically related to the appraisal and served to maintain the distress. Conclusions: People with distressing VH regard them as a threat to their wellbeing and use safety seeking behaviours as a result of this perceived threat. These key processes are potential targets for treatments that will alleviate the distress associated with VH.
There are theoretical challenges in distinguishing obsessions from overvalued ideas (OVIs) and delusions. The latter can be defined by its rigid nature and unusual content, but obsessions and OVIs are also reported with such characteristics. Clinically, what are the implications when this distinction is not entirely clear? In this case study, these issues are explored with a man who presented with commonly reported symptoms of obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) and a belief about transforming into a giant fly. Clinically meaningful gains were made following a course of 17 sessions of CBT, providing some additional support for the effectiveness of CBT for abnormal beliefs within OCD.
Background: A key process in Cognitive Therapy (CT) is the development and sharing of a formulation. How clinicians develop formulations is under-researched, particularly in working with people with psychosis. Aims: This study investigated agreement between clinicians, when conceptualizing an individual's psychotic beliefs. It also explored whether agreement was dependent on qualifications and experience. Method: Eighty-two clinicians watched a video of an individual with delusional beliefs, and were asked to provide formulations using a CT template. These were compared with a “benchmark” formulation provided by three experts. Results: There was good agreement for overt behaviours, emotions, and some aspects of early experience. However, identification of theory driven components such as core beliefs or assumptions was poorer. Greater clinical experience improved the agreement with the benchmark formulation overall, and greater CT specific experience improved formulation of the theory driven items. The more experience a clinician had of working with people with psychosis the lower the rate of agreement with the expert formulation. Conclusions: Formulation of delusional beliefs from a cognitive perspective is dependant on overall experience in cognitive therapy and not knowledge of psychosis, which may hinder performance. The implications for training in CT and psycho-social interventions are considered.
Sri Lanka has experienced a 24-year civil war with monthly terrorist incidents. Disaster drills, as a method of teinforcing collaboration and improved communication, can enhance military and civil response coordination and ultimately benefit the community and the injured victim.
Two large-scale disaster drills occurred in Sri Lanka in 2008 with participation of military disaster response teams, civil hospitals, international non-governmental organizations (INGOs), the World Health Organization, American universities and hospitals, the local governments, Ministry of Health, non-governmental organizations, the Red Cross, and others. Training occurred in incident command, communication, clinical response, crowd control, evaluation, and the planning process. Civil and private prehospital care responders worked closely with the military during the drill. More than 400 participants gave active feedback and an educational video of the recorded drills was distributed for future training exercises.
Military and civil responders identified challenges and strengths and discussed improvements for future operations. In the days following the drill, participants responded to actual mass casualty incidents with improved skills, coordination and communication. Subsequent drills and task-force meetings were conducted. The INGOs supported follow-up activities and provided training materials. International partnerships were forged with military, civilian representatives, and disaster medicine specialists. Military and civil response teams had never performed a drill together before and felt it was invaluable for their coordination.
The promotion of drills involving military, civil society, and communities should be encouraged to improve response, especially in countries with ongoing civil conflict and high terrorist activity. Drills can help military and civil partners reach a broader understanding of the others' role and methodology of response, which may improve the outcome and timeliness of a disaster response.