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Effectiveness of attentional bias modification and cognitive behavioral therapy on the reduction of pain intensity in patients with chronic pain

Authors: Fateme Babai, Tooraj Sepavand, Mostafa Nokani, Marzyeh Aghamohammadi and Farshad Sheybani

Int J Med Res Health Sci.273-278 | pdf PDF Full Text

The aim of the study was to determine the effectiveness of Attentional Bias Modification (ABM) and Cognitive
Behavioral Therapy (CBT) on the reduction of pain intensityin patients with chronic pain. This study was a quasiexperimental
pretest-posttest design with control group. All patients who referred to physiotherapy clinics for pain
during 2015 were participated in the study. They completed the Brief Pain Inventory-short form (BPI-SF) for
assessing severity of pain. Attentional bias was evaluated using computerized Dot-Probe task. The patients with
chronic pain were screened by diagnostic criteria of DSM-V; neurologic diagnosis, and interview. 36 people were
selected and randomly divided to three groups computer-based ABM, CBT, and control (12 cases in each group).
Group A was trained in 8 sessions-each 15 minutes with the modified computerized Dot-Probe task for attentional
bias modification. Group B was trained in 11 sessions-each 45 minutes with CBT program of Turk and Ferry for the
chronic pain treatment. And Placebo program was administered for group C in which they completed 8 classic Dot-
Probe sessions. In the end, for the posttest (T2) the participants were tested to identify the changes in biased
attention to the emotional stimuli using classing Dot-Probe tasks, and BPI questionnaire to evaluate the changes of
severity of pain. Data were analyzed using one-way variance analysis(ANOVA). On the BPI-SF, CBT more reduced
the pain intensitythan computer-based ABM.In addition ABM treatment is more effective in reduction of attentional
bias.Both of treatments are effective but CBT is more effective than ABM in reduction of pain intensity.
Key words: Attentional Bias Modification, Cognitive- Behavioral Therapy, Chronic Pain

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