Cognitive Behavioral Aggression Treatment

2014-08-27 04:00:23 | BioPortfolio


Aggressive behavior is a leading worldwide public health problem. Despite this, relatively little is known about how to best treat individuals who are highly angry and aggressive. A rich literature suggests that aggression is associated with a tendency to interpret situations as threatening or hostile even when they are not. This process is governed by a prefrontal-limbic circuit in the brain. A goal of cognitive behavioral therapy is to reduce these kinds of hostile biases. Preliminary data by the PI suggests a 12- session cognitive behavioral aggression treatment (CBAT) may help reduce aggressive behavior and underlying hostile biases associated with affective aggression. To assess the efficacy of this treatment, 120 adults with high levels of anger and aggression will receive 12 sessions of either CBAT or supportive psychotherapy. All subjects will monitor their anger and aggressive behavior throughout the treatment electronic diaries. Subjects will also complete questionnaires and computer tasks to assess anger, hostile biases and related processes 1-week before treatment begins, and again 1-week, 6-months and 1-year after treatment ends. In addition, to understand the effects of CBAT on the brain, subjects will have their brains scanned (functional Magnetic Resonance Imaging) while they look at emotional pictures and complete computer tasks. The brain scans will occur once before treatment starts and once after treatment ends.

Our hypotheses are:

1. CBAT will reduce anger, aggression and hostile biases more than supportive therapy.

2. CBAT will decrease limbic activation and increase prefrontal activation to emotional pictures more than supportive therapy.

Study Design

Allocation: Randomized, Endpoint Classification: Efficacy Study, Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment, Masking: Single Blind (Outcomes Assessor), Primary Purpose: Treatment






Temple University
United States




Temple University

Results (where available)

View Results


Published on BioPortfolio: 2014-08-27T04:00:23-0400

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Medical and Biotech [MESH] Definitions

The use of more than one therapist at one time in individual or group psychotherapy.

Any form of psychotherapy designed to produce therapeutic change within a minimal amount of time, generally not more than 20 sessions.

Forms of PSYCHOTHERAPY falling within or deriving from the psychoanalytic tradition, that view individuals as reacting to unconscious forces (e.g., motivation, drive), that focus on processes of change and development, and that place a premium on self understanding and making meaning of what is unconscious.

The use of mental images produced by the imagination as a form of psychotherapy. It can be classified by the modality of its content: visual, verbal, auditory, olfactory, tactile, gustatory, or kinesthetic. Common themes derive from nature imagery (e.g., forests and mountains), water imagery (e.g., brooks and oceans), travel imagery, etc. Imagery is used in the treatment of mental disorders and in helping patients cope with other diseases. Imagery often forms a part of HYPNOSIS, of AUTOGENIC TRAINING, of RELAXATION TECHNIQUES, and of BEHAVIOR THERAPY. (From Encyclopedia of Human Behavior, vol. 4, pp29-30, 1994)

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