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A 30-month follow-up of generalized anxiety disorder: Status after metacognitive therapy and intolerance of uncertainty-therapy

Colin van der Heiden, Kim Melchior


Objectives: Although metacognitive therapy and intolerance-of-uncertainty therapy are considered efficacious treatments for generalized anxiety disorder, little is known about the long-term course in patients who engaged in treatment studies.
Method: We conducted a continuation study of patients with GAD who had participated in a randomized, delayed treatment controlled trial in which the relative efficacy of MCT and IUT were compared.

Results: Of the original 85 patients who completed the study, 34 were available for assessment of worry severity at 30-month follow-up. Both treatment groups showed maintenance of treatment gains from 6-month to 30-month follow-up assesment. However, MCT produced better results at long-term follow-up, which was reflected in statistically and clinically significant differences, and in terms of sustained efficacy (i.e., the degree in which patients who improved with treatment remained improved).

Conclusion: Both MCT and IUT may be associated with long-term benefits for patients diagnosed with GAD, with MCT performing significantly better than IUT, and showing greater sustained efficacy.

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