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Attention retraining treatment for contamination fear: A randomized control trial

dc.contributor.advisorOlatunji, Bunmi O.
dc.contributor.authorSarawgi, Shivali
dc.description.abstractAlthough an attentional bias for threat-relevant information has been connected to the etiology of contamination-based obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), the treatment implications of such a bias remains unclear. Accordingly, the present investigation examined the hypothesis that direct manipulation of attention for threat-relevant stimuli (disgusted faces and disgusting objects) may effectively reduce symptoms of contamination fear, commonly observed in OCD. Participants were randomly assigned to one of three probe detection conditions: (1) training away from threat (2) training toward threat, or (3) no training (control condition). Self-reported symptoms, behavioral avoidance, and physiological responding during exposure to threat-relevant images was assessed before and after two attention retraining sessions conducted one week apart. The results revealed that attention was successfully manipulated for both training groups. However, the desired attention training bias was observed for disgusting objects and not disgusted faces. Contrary to predictions, symptom levels did not improve as a result of attention training. However, there was some evidence of significant associations between change in symptoms and the magnitude of the bias observed as a function of attention training. The implications of these complex patterns of findings for the feasibility of attention retraining as a treatment for OCD and other anxiety disorders will be discussed.en_US
dc.description.sponsorshipThesis completed in partial fulfillment of the requirements of the Honors Program in Psychological Sciencesen_US
dc.publisherVanderbilt Universityen_US
dc.subjectAttention Bias Modificationen_US
dc.subjectContamination Fearen_US
dc.subject.lcshObsessive-compulsive disorderen_US
dc.subject.lcshThreat (Psychology)en_US
dc.subject.lcshObsessive-compulsive disorder -- Treatmenten_US
dc.titleAttention retraining treatment for contamination fear: A randomized control trialen_US
dc.description.collegeVanderbilt Universityen_US
dc.description.schoolCollege of Arts and Scienceen_US
dc.description.departmentPsychological Sciencesen_US

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