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A case report of cognitive behavioural therapy for social anxiety in an ultra-high risk patient

Authors

  • Margaret Haglund,

    1. Department of Psychiatry, New York State Psychiatric Institute at Columbia University, New York, New York, USA
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  • Deborah Cabaniss,

    1. Department of Psychiatry, New York State Psychiatric Institute at Columbia University, New York, New York, USA
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  • David Kimhy,

    1. Department of Psychiatry, New York State Psychiatric Institute at Columbia University, New York, New York, USA
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  • Cheryl M. Corcoran

    Corresponding author
    1. Department of Psychiatry, New York State Psychiatric Institute at Columbia University, New York, New York, USA
    • Corresponding author: Dr Cheryl M. Corcoran, Department of Psychiatry, New York State Psychiatric Institute at Columbia University, 1051 Riverside Drive Box 55, New York, NY 10032, USA. Email: corcora@nyspi.columbia.edu

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Abstract

Aim:

Psychological treatments such as cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) may have efficacy in young people at ultra-high risk (UHR) for psychosis. Case reports can illuminate the obstacles and challenges, and potential trajectory of symptom changes, observed with this treatment.

Methods:

This is a detailed case report of a young adult at UHR for psychosis who received manualized CBT for accompanying social anxiety.

Results:

Cognitive deficits and suspiciousness created initial challenges for successful implementation of CBT. Engagement in treatment occurred with slowing of pace and simplification of material, and modelling of social interaction. Treatment of social anxiety was accompanied by decreases in suspiciousness, conceptual disorganization, and social anhedonia, and increase in range of affect.

Conclusions:

Adaptation of manualized CBT to accommodate cognitive deficits and suspiciousness in UHR patients may improve engagement. CBT focused on social anxiety can lead to improvement across symptom domains in UHR patients.

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