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The identification and psychological treatment of panic disorder in adolescents: a survey of CAMHS clinicians

Baker, H. and Waite, P. (2020) The identification and psychological treatment of panic disorder in adolescents: a survey of CAMHS clinicians. Child and Adolescent Mental Health, 25 (3). pp. 135-142. ISSN 1475-3588

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To link to this item DOI: 10.1111/camh.12372

Abstract/Summary

Background Panic disorder is experienced by around 1% of adolescents, and has a significant impact on social and academic functioning. Preliminary evidence supports the effectiveness of panic disorder specific treatment in adolescents with panic disorder, however panic disorder may be overlooked in adolescents due to overlapping symptoms with other anxiety disorders and other difficulties being more noticeable to others. The aim of this study was to establish what training National Health Service (NHS) Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) clinicians have received in psychological therapies and panic disorder and how they identify and treat panic disorder in adolescents. Method CAMHS clinicians from a range of professions (n = 427), who were delivering psychological treatments to children and adolescents with anxiety disorders, participated. They completed a cross-sectional, online survey, including a vignette describing an adolescent with panic disorder, and were asked to identify the main diagnosis or presenting problem. Results Less than half the clinicians (48.6%) identified panic disorder or panic symptoms as the main presenting problem from the vignette. The majority of clinicians suggested CBT would be their treatment approach. However, few identified an evidence-based treatment protocol for working with young people with panic disorder. Almost half the sample had received no training in cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT) and around a fifth had received no training in delivering psychological treatments. Conclusions Only half of CAMHS clinicians identified panic disorder from a vignette and although CBT treatments are widely offered, only a minority of adolescents with panic disorder are receiving treatments developed for, and evaluated with young people with panic disorder. There is a vital need for clinician training, the use of tools that aid identification and the implementation of evidence-based treatments within CAMHS.

Item Type:Article
Refereed:Yes
Divisions:Faculty of Life Sciences > School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences > Anxiety and Depression in Young People (AnDY)
Faculty of Life Sciences > School of Psychology and Clinical Language Sciences > Department of Psychology
ID Code:88933
Publisher:Wiley

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