Intensive group cognitive therapy and individual cognitive therapy for social phobia: sustained improvement at 5-year follow-up.
Mörtberg E., Clark DM., Bejerot S.
Little is known about the long-term outcome of treatments for social phobia. At 5 years post-treatment we contacted the 67 patients who had been treated with intensive group cognitive therapy (IGCT) or individual cognitive therapy (ICT) in a randomized controlled trial (Mörtberg, Clark, Sundin, & Åberg Wistedt, 2007) that originally compared IGCT, ICT, and treatment as usual (n=100 for the full trial). Seventy-two percent (48 patients) who received IGCT or ICT agreed to participate in the follow-up assessment. All re-completed the original self-report measures of symptoms and disability and a quality of life measure. A subset was also interviewed. Seventy-five percent (36 patients) had sought no further treatment for social phobia. Comparisons between post-treatment and 5-year follow-up indicated that patients who had received either treatment showed further improvement in social phobia symptoms and disability during the follow-up period. These improvements were present in patients who had no additional treatment, as well as in the total sample. In conclusion, it appears that the effects of IGCT and ICT are maintained and improved upon at 5 years post-treatment.