Meeting Banner
Abstract #3472

Changes in cerebral blood flow following successful psychotherapy combined with cortisol treatment in spider phobia

Ariane Orosz 1 , Leila Soravia 1 , Kay Jann 2 , Roland Wiest 3 , Thomas Dierks 1 , and Andrea Federspiel 1

1 Department of Psychiatric Neurophysiology, University Hospital of Psychiatry, Bern, Bern, Switzerland, 2 Department of Neurology, UCLA, Ahmanson-Lovelace Brain Mapping Center, Los Angeles, California, United States, 3 Institute of Diagnostic and Interventional Neuroradiology, University Hospital/Inselspital, Bern, Bern, Switzerland

Neuroimaging insights into the neuronal mechanisms underlying effective treatment of spider phobia may provide important information for treatment of anxiety disorders. In this study we measured 15 patients with spider phobia before and after cognitive behavior therapy using arterial spin labeling. As the stress-hormone cortisol is supposed to reduce phobic fear in anxiety disorder, the patients were assigned to receive either cortisol or placebo in addition to psychotherapy in a double-blind study design. We could show that successful psychotherapy is associated with a significant decrease in CBF in the prefrontal cortex. Cortisol further decreases CBF in this region.

This abstract and the presentation materials are available to members only; a login is required.

Join Here