Evaluation of Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy for Drinking. Outcome of Japanese Alcoholic Patients.

New Study (1)Abstract

This study examined the efficacy of a group-based cognitive-behavioral treatment (CBT) for Japanese alcoholic outpatients. Participants (N = 169) were assigned either to a CBT-based relapse prevention group or a TAU (treatment as usual) group. The CBT group received 12-session CBT treatment with a structured treatment workbook once a week. The TAU group received usual daycare treatment including 12-step meeting, vocational training and leisure activities. Participants in the CBT group demonstrated a significantly low relapse rate at the end of treatment. Moreover, coping skills of the CBT group participants were significantly improved than those of the TAU group at the 6-month follow-up period. However, at the 6-month follow-up, the difference in relapse rates diminished. The effectiveness of CBT for alcoholics was well documented in Western countries but few studies were conducted outside of the West. The results provide support for the use of CBT for Japanese alcoholics.


Harada, T., Yamamura, K., Koshiba, A., Ohishi, H., & Ohishi, M. (2014). Evaluation of

cognitive-behavioral therapy for drinking.  Outcome of Japanese alcoholic patients.

Nihon Arukoru Yakubutsu Igakkai Zasshi. 49(5), 249-258

Workshop Participant Spotlight(s) – Petrona Anderson, LMHC and Makiko Clark, LCSW

Both Petrona Anderson (left) and Makiko Clark (right) traveled to the Beck Institute workshop in Philadelphia from Japan. Their 15 hour flight took them to Pittsburgh, where they had an additional 4 hour drive to Philadelphia. DSC_0130

Both work in the same department at the U.S. Naval Hospital in Yokosuka, Japan. Makiko works as a LCSW for the Navy and Petrona, a LMHC, works as a substance abuse counselor.

They decided to come to the workshop (even though it was so far away) because Makiko had always wanted to attend a training at Beck Institute. She had researched CBT training online and learned Beck Institute’s prestige. Petrona was excited for the experience to travel and experience Philadelphia.

Petrona appreciated learning how to enhance the therapeutic alliance. Makiko said “sometimes we think we know what to do from reading the books, but learning in person makes a big impact.” She knows that attending this Core 1 workshop on CBT for Depression and Suicidality has helped her to be able to deliver better and more efficient therapy. Both learned to be aware of their own automatic thoughts, and how to keep that from having an impact on treatment.

They appreciated all four presenters of being professional, yet humble. “They (the presenters) were open to questions at any time and were willing to answer anything.” Petrona and Makiko ended our mini-interview laughing, saying Dr. Judith Beck’s line “I’m so glad you told me that!”

Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy for Pediatric Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

New Study (1)

The efficacy of cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT) for pediatric obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) has been the subject of much study over the past fifteen years. Building on a foundation of case studies and open clinical trials, the literature now contains many methodologically sound studies that have compared full CBT protocols to waitlist controls, pill placebo, psychosocial comparison conditions, active medication, combined treatments, and brief CBT. This review is part of a series commissioned by The Canadian Institute for Obsessive Compulsive Disorders (CIOCD) in an effort to publish in one place what is known about the efficacy of treatments for OCD. A total of fourteen studies were identified; collectively their findings support the efficacy of CBT for youth with OCD. CBT protocols that emphasized either strictly behavioral or cognitive conceptualizations have each been found efficacious relative to waitlist controls. Efforts to enhance CBT’s efficacy and reach have been undertaken. These trials provide guidance regarding next steps to be taken to maximize efficacy and treatment availability. Findings from studies in community clinics suggest that significant treatment benefits can be realized and are not reported only from within academic contexts. These findings bode well for broader dissemination efforts. Recommendations for future research directions are provided.

Franklin, M.E., Kratz, H.E., Freeman, J.B., Ivarsson, T., Heyman, I., Sookman,D.,…March, J. (2015). Cognitive-behavioral therapy for pediatric obsessive-compulsive disorder: Empirical review and clinical recommendations. Psychiatry Research, 227(1), 78-92. doi: 10.1016/j.psychres.2015.02.009

Protocol: Reducing Suicidal Ideation Among Turkish Migrants in the Netherlands and in the UK: Effectiveness of an Online Intervention

New Study (1)Abstract
Background: The Turkish community living in Europe has an increased risk for suicidal ideation and attempted suicide. Online self-help may be an effective way of engagement with this community. This study will evaluate the effectiveness of a culturally adapted, guided, cognitive behavioural therapy-based online self-help intervention targeting suicidal ideation for Turkish adults living in the Netherlands and in the UK.
Methods and design: This study will be performed in two phases. First, the Dutch online intervention will be adapted to Turkish culture. The second phase will be a randomized controlled trial with two conditions: experimental and waiting-list control. Ethical approval has been granted for the trials in London and Amsterdam. The experimental group will obtain direct access to the intervention, which will take 6 weeks to complete. Participants in the waiting-list condition will obtain access to the modules after 6 weeks. Participants in both conditions will be assessed at baseline, post-test and 3 months post-test follow-up. The primary outcome measure is reduction in frequency and intensity of suicidal thoughts. Secondary outcome measures are self-harm, attempted suicide, suicide ideation attributes, depression, hopelessness, anxiety, quality of life, worrying and satisfaction with the treatment.
Read More: http://informahealthcare.com/doi/abs/10.3109/09540261.2014.996121

Written by 2013 Student Scholarship Recipient: Ozlem Eylem:

Eylem, O., van Straten, A., Bhui, K., & Kerkhofl, J.F.M. (2015). Protocol: Reducing suicidal
ideation among Turkish migrants in the Netherlands and in the UK: Effectiveness of an online intervention. International Review of Psychiatry, 27(1), 72-81. doi:

E-Newsletter: Helping Clients with Personality Disorders Focus on Problem Solving

Judith S. Beck, PhD, President

Beck Institute for Cognitive Behavior TherapyBeck0135

When a client poses a challenge in Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT), it is important to conceptualize why the problem has arisen. Is it a practical problem? Is it related to the client’s dysfunctional beliefs? Is it related to the therapist’s dysfunctional beliefs? In this article, I’ll describe two difficulties that were practical in nature. Future articles will focus on client and therapist cognitions.


Amy, a thirtyish woman, is a single mom with significant legal, financial, and parenting problems. When her therapist attempted to have her describe her financial problem (which Amy had indicated was the most important agenda item), Amy almost immediately burst into tears and sobbed uncontrollably. She was unable to identify her upsetting automatic thoughts, much less focus on what to do about her large credit card bills and the hounding phone calls from bill collectors. The therapist conceptualized that he should first try solving the practical problem of Amy’s high degree of emotionality, and suggested a change of topic. “Amy, I’m sorry this is so upsetting to you.” [pause] “Would it be okay if we talked about something else for a few minutes?” When Amy nods, her therapist asks a question which he thinks could brighten her mood. “Did Crystal [her 5 year old daughter] draw any pictures for you lately? Or bring home any art projects from school?”

Jeremy, an electrician in his mid-fifties, has a tendency to jump from topic to topic in therapy. In a recent session, he began describing a problem with his neighbor-then continually switched his focus. “You know, it’s the same kind of thing my brother has been doing to me for years. Just last week, he accused me of not spending enough time with Mom. And she’s a whole other problem. She’s been calling me and calling me. It’s driving me crazy. I don’t know how I’m going to keep my job. My boss said if I keep talking on my cell phone during work, he’s going to fire me. He’s such an unreasonable bastard to begin with. He’s always making these threats. But if I lose my job…” It was essential for the therapist to help Jeremy refocus. “Jeremy, can I interrupt for a moment? I want to make sure we talk about what’s most important to you first. Is it your neighbor, your brother, your mom, your boss? Or is it losing your job?”

In the first example, getting Amy to talk about a more uplifting subject settled her down enough to allow her to do some problem-solving about her finances. And in the second example, every time his therapist interrupted him and structured the discussion, Jeremy was able to focus on one problem. Practical solutions such as these, however, may be essential but not sufficient for clients whose cognitions are associated with unhelpful behaviors in session. On the other hand, the problems may look like practical ones, but these strategies may be irrelevant if underlying beliefs are involved. Stay tuned… 

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Characteristics of U.S. Veterans Who Begin and Complete Prolonged Exposure and Cognitive Processing Therapy for PTSD

New Study (1)Abstract

This retrospective chart-review study examined patient-level correlates of initiation and completion of evidence-based psychotherapy (EBP) for posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) among treatment-seeking U.S. veterans. We identified all patients (N = 796) in a large Veterans Affairs PTSD and anxiety clinic who attended at least 1 individual psychotherapy appointment with 1 of 8 providers trained in EBP. Within this group, 91 patients (11.4%) began EBP (either Cognitive Processing Therapy or Prolonged Exposure) and 59 patients (7.9%) completed EBP. The medical records of all EBP patients (n = 91) and a provider-matched sample of patients who received another form of individual psychotherapy (n = 66) were reviewed by 4 independent raters. Logistic regression analyses revealed that Iraq and Afghanistan veterans were less likely to begin EBP than veterans from other service eras, OR = 0.48, 95% CI = [0.24, 0.94], and veterans who were service connected for PTSD were more likely than veterans without service connection to begin EBP, OR = 2.33, 95% CI = [1.09, 5.03]. Among those who began EBP, Iraq and Afghanistan veteran status, OR = 0.09, 95% CI = [0.03, 0.30], and a history of psychiatric inpatient hospitalization, OR = 0.13, 95% CI = [0.03, 0.54], were associated with decreased likelihood of EBP completion.


Mott, J.M., Mondragon, S., Hundt, N.E., Beason-Smith, M., Grady, R.H., & Teng, E.J. (2014).Characteristics of U.S. veterans who begin and complete prolonged exposure and cognitive processing therapy for PTSD. Journal of Traumatic Stress, 27(3), 265-273.doi: 10.1002/jts.21927.

Workshop Participant Spotlight – Sandra Pasek

Traveling to Beck Institute from Poland, Sandra Pasek works as a psychologist and life coach treating individuals with health issues. She is currently interested in incorporating CBT into her work of implementing holistic health in Poland because “CBT is proven, scientific, and you can see the results.”



Sandra was excited to attend this workshop, CBT for Weight Loss and Maintenance because it focused on many of her interests that dieters struggle with across the world, such as coping with stress, losing weight, and maintaining healthy lifestyles. “No matter the country and geographic location, people all around the world face the same issues.”


Ms. Pasek enjoyed that this workshop used actual client examples to illustrate using structured treatment to help dieters avoid getting off track and maintain a weight loss plan. “I liked the real-life examples; it wasn’t just theoretical.” From this workshop, she learned help dieters “focus on what [they] did right” and give themselves credit for positive food and exercise choices, motivating them to make more healthy decisions. “Weight loss is not magic, it takes focus and determination.”