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Table 1 Example diseases and problems for which CBT is expected to be effective (Cochrane reviews)

From: Cognitive–behavioral therapy for management of mental health and stress-related disorders: Recent advances in techniques and technologies

Major disease conditions Summary of evidence Update
Psychiatric disorders:
Depression, general
‘Third -wave’ CBT as effective treatment of acute depression
Reduced depressive symptoms in dementia and mild cognitive impairment
Improved response and remission rates for treatment-resistant depression
Reduced depressive symptoms in children with long-term physical conditions
Reduced depressive symptoms in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease
Reduced depressive symptoms in dialysis patients
Reduced the number of sickness absence days in workers
October 2013
January 2014
May 2018
December 2018
March 2019
December 2019
October 2020
Anxiety, general
Obsessive–compulsive disorder
Panic disorder
Reduced anxiety symptoms in adults by “media-delivered CBT” (self-help)
Reduced anxiety symptoms in dementia and mild cognitive impairment
Reduced anxiety symptoms in adults by therapist-supported internet CBT
Reduced anxiety symptoms in children with long-term physical conditions
Effective for attention control in children and adolescents
Effective in children and adolescents with this disorder
Effective in adults with this disorder
Efficacy of both CBT alone and CBT and antidepressants
Efficacy of both CBT and benzodiazepines
September 2013
January 2014
March 2016
December 2018
November 2020
October 2006
April 2007
January 2007
January 2009
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD)
Social anxiety disorder
Effective in children and adolescents for up to 1 month following CBT
Reduced clinician-assessed PTSD symptoms in adults
Reduced PTSD symptoms when used as couple and family therapies
Reduced social phobia via brief CBT
December 2012
December 2013
December 2019
September 2018
Acute stress disorder Reduced acute traumatic stress symptoms via brief trauma-focused CBT March 2010
Attention deficit–hyperactivity disorder Beneficial for treating adults with this disorder in the short term March 2018
Bulimia nervosa
Somatoform disorder
Efficacy of a specific manual-based form of CBT for bulimia nervosa
Reduced hypochondriacal symptoms and general functioning
Reduced symptom severity in adults with somatoform disorders
October 2009
October 2007
November 2014
Physical diseases:
Breast cancer
Improved survival at 12 months (metastatic)
Favorable effects on anxiety, depression and mood disturbance (non-metastatic)
June 2013
May 2015
Chronic fatigue syndrome
Reduced fatigue symptoms
Reduced pain, negative mood, and disability
July 2008
September 2013
Irritable bowel syndrome
Recurrent abdominal pain
Reduced symptoms of irritable bowel syndrome and improved quality of life
Reduced pain in the short term in children and adolescents
January 2009
January 2017
Tinnitus Reduced negative impacts on quality of life and depression January 2020
Behavioral and other problems:
Antisocial behaviors
Benzodiazepine use
Burden of care for dementia
Early behavioral problems
Needle-related problems
Obesity and overweight
Occupational stress
Problem gambling
Sexual abuse
Reduced antisocial behaviors in young people in the short term
Effective in the short term for reducing benzodiazepine harmful use
Reduced psychological stress in family caregivers of people with dementia
Improved child conduct problems, parental mental health, and parenting skills
Reduced children’s needle-related pain and distress in children and adolescents
Reduced weight, predominantly useful when combined with diet and exercise
Reduced stress at work in healthcare workers
Reduced pathological and problem gambling behaviors immediately after CBT
Resulted in fewer adults repeatedly self-poisoning and self-injuring
Reduced symptoms of PTSD, anxiety, and depression in children
October 2007
May 2015
November 2011
February 2012
October 2018
April 2005
April 2015
November 2012
May 2016
May 2012
Smoking Effective for smoking cessation in indigenous populations January 2012