Treatment Research

While clinical science has yielded a number of psychotherapeutic interventions that benefit individuals with a broad range of psychopathology, not everyone benefits from these treatments and it is still unclear how these treatments work. Consequently, there is a significant need for research into the predictors and mediators of treatment response, particularly beyond traditional randomized clinical trial settings. We have examined factors involved in treatment response for a complex psychiatric sample presenting for treatment in a partial hospital setting, finding support for the relevance of therapeutic skill change, rumination, and treatment expectancy in prediction of therapeutic response. We also have examined the neural mechanisms underlying psychotherapy, specifically conducting the first examination of common and distinct neural mediators underlying treatment for Social Anxiety Disorder with Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy.

Relevant work

  • Peckham, A.D., Forgeard, M.J.C., Hsu, K.J., Beard, C., & Björgvinsson, T. (in press). Turning the UPPS down: Impulsivity and treatment outcome in a partial hospitalization program. Comprehensive Psychiatry.
  • Young, K.S., LeBeau, R.T., Niles, A.N., Hsu, K.J., Burklund, L.J., Mesri, B., Saxbe, D., Lieberman, M.D., & Craske, M.G. (in press). Neural connectivity during affect labeling predicts treatment response to psychological therapies for social anxiety disorder. Journal of Affective Disorders.
  • Wadsworth, L.P., Forgeard, M., Hsu, K.J., Treadway, M., Kertz, S., & Björgvinsson, T. (2018). Examining the role of repetitive negative thinking in relations between positive and negative aspects of self-compassion and symptom improvement during intensive treatment. Cognitive Therapy and Research, 42 (3), 236-249.
  • Webb, C.A., Beard, C., Kertz, S.J., Hsu, K.J., & Björgvinsson, T. (2016). Differential role of CBT, DBT, and psychological flexibility in predicting depressive versus anxiety symptom improvement. Behaviour Research and Therapy, 81, 12-20.
  • Beard, C., Stein, A., Hearon, B., Lee, J., Hsu, K.J., & Björgvinsson, T. (2016). Predictors of depression treatment response in an intensive CBT partial hospital. Journal of Clinical Psychology, 72 (4), 297-310.
  • Hsu, K.J., Forgeard, M.J.C., Rifkin, L.S., Beard, C., & Bjorgvinsson, T. (2016, October). Examining the relationship between reductions in dysfunctional thinking on depression and anxiety symptom reduction in an intensive CBT setting: the role of rumination. In S. Kertz (Chair), Examining the mediating role of repetitive negative thinking across psychological outcomes. Symposium conducted at the 50th annual meeting of the Association of Behavioral and Cognitive Therapy, New York, NY.
  • Hsu, K.J.+, Young, K.S.+, Burklind, L.J., Sun, M., Torre, J., Saxbe, D., Lieberman, M.D., & Craske, M.G. (2019). Common and distinct neural mediators underlying response to Cognitive Behavioral Therapy and Acceptance and Commitment Therapy for Social Anxiety Disorder. Manuscript in submission.

+Indicates the authors contributed equally.

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Kean J. Hsu
Postdoctoral Research Fellow

My research interests include attention and executive functioning, repetitive negative thinking, and emotional disorders.