CANBERRA, Australia, Oct. 19 -- Behavioral or cognitive behavioral therapy, with or without medication, is the top choice against obsessive-compulsive disorder in children and adolescents, according to a systematic Cochrane review.
While behavioral therapy alone was as good as Zoloft (sertraline), Anafranil (clomipramine) and Luvox (fluvoxamine) at reducing repetitive actions, the combination was significantly more effective than medication alone, said Richard O'Kearney, Ph.D., of the Australian National University here, and colleagues.
However, "there is still insufficient evidence to be able to specify the preferred sequence of treatments for pediatric obsessive compulsive disorder," noted the authors in the review published in the Oct. 18 issue of The Cochrane Library.
Behavioral therapy involves exposure to the anxiety-producing triggers and then preventing the compulsive behavior. It is recommended as the treatment of choice for pediatric obsessive-compulsive disorder by the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry primarily on the basis of conclusions reached in adult studies.