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May 21, 2012
According to a recent study published in the Journal of Anxiety Disorders, videoconference- and cell phone-based cognitive behavior therapy (CBT) may improve obsessive-compulsive symptoms in patients with limited access to face-to-face therapy. In the current study, researchers in Norway partnered with researchers at the University of Michigan to study the efficacy of CBT via electronic means. Six OCD patients received fifteen therapy sessions via electronic forms during a 12-week period. Nine sessions were conducted via cell phone, and six were conducted via videoconference. Patients completed self-report measures at pretreatment, throughout treatment, post treatment, and at a three month follow-up. Five of the patients were female; ages ranged from 24-44 years. Results indicate that all participants achieved at least 50% reductions in all measures of OCD, depression, and anxiety. When compared to previous studies, these reductions are consistent with face-to-face therapy. These findings provide preliminary support for CBT via electronic means as an alternative treatment approach for OCD patients with limited access to treatment facilities.

Vogel, P. A., Launes, G., Moen, E. M., Solem, S., Hansen, B., Haland, A. T., & Himle, J. A. (2012).  Videoconference– and cell phone-based cognitive behavioral therapy of obsessive-compulsive disorder: A case series. Journal of Anxiety Disorders, 26(1), 158-164.