STUDY PROTOCOL: EXPOSURE IN VIRTUAL REALITY FOR SOCIAL ANXIETY DISORDER - a randomized controlled superiority trial comparing cognitive behavioral therapy with virtual reality based exposure to cognitive behavioral therapy with in vivo exposure

Lars Clemmensen, Stéphane Bouchard, Johan Rasmussen, Trine Theresa Holmberg, Jakob Hyldig Nielsen, Jens Richardt Møllegaard Jepsen, Mia Beck Lichtenstein

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Abstrakt

BACKGROUND: Social Anxiety Disorder (SAD) is characterized by an intense fear of negative judgement by others. Cognitive Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is recommended for treatment, but a substantial part of individuals with SAD either do not seek treatment or drop-out. CBT with Virtual Reality (VR)-based exposure has several advantages compared to traditional exposure methods, mainly due to increased control of situational elements. The aim of the current study is to develop a CBT program containing VR-based exposure. The intervention is targeted to adult patients suffering from SAD and treatment effect will be assessed by changes in SAD symptoms. METHODS: This article describes the study protocol of a Randomized Controlled Trial with three arms: 1) CBT with VR exposure based on 360° videos 2) CBT with in vivo exposure and 3) VR relaxation therapy. There will be 30 participants in each arm with a crossover at the end of the treatment period during which the participants in the third group will be randomly re-allocated to one of the two former groups. The treatment program consists of 10 weekly individual sessions with a psychologist, and a six month follow-up consisting of a questionnaire. The primary outcome measure is reduction in SAD symptoms which will be assessed with the Social Interaction Anxiety Scale (SIAS). DISCUSSION: There are currently no published studies on CBT with VR exposure based on 360° videos for SAD treatment. Furthermore, the current study will be the first Danish SAD treatment program that includes VR technology. TRIAL REGISTRATION: clinicaltrials.gov (NCT03973541) June 3rd 2019.

OriginalsprogEngelsk
Artikelnummer32
TidsskriftBMC Psychiatry
Vol/bind20
Antal sider9
ISSN1471-244X
DOI
StatusUdgivet - 30. jan. 2020

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