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Trials. 2015 Apr 11;16:150. doi: 10.1186/s13063-015-0679-0.

Attention placebo control in randomized controlled trials of psychosocial interventions: theory and practice.

Author information

1
Department of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology, Faculty of Psychology, Ruhr-Universit├Ąt Bochum, Bochum, Germany. lukka.popp@rub.de.
2
Department of Clinical Child and Adolescent Psychology, Faculty of Psychology, Ruhr-Universit├Ąt Bochum, Bochum, Germany. silvia.schneider@rub.de.

Abstract

Attention placebo control (APC) is considered a highly valid control condition when conducting trials of social interventions. Unfortunately, an appropriate APC condition is rarely used. This letter discusses the tension between methodological and ethical requirements of an APC group in psychosocial interventions based on our experiences with a randomized controlled efficacy study of a parent training program. To prevent negative side effects and high drop-out rates, feasible and accepted attention control conditions are discussed. The paradigms of placebo research must be adapted to the special challenges of psychosocial intervention research.

TRIAL REGISTRATION:

Clinicaltrials.gov NCT02313493 : registered 10 December 2014.

PMID:
25872619
PMCID:
PMC4404062
DOI:
10.1186/s13063-015-0679-0
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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