- A randomized controlled trial of Web-based Attentional Bias Modification to help smokers quit
- Health Psychology
- Volume | Issue number
- 35 | 8
- Pages (from-to)
- Document type
- Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences (FMG)
- Psychology Research Institute (PsyRes)
OBJECTIVE: To assess the efficacy of a multiple-sessions Web-based Attentional Bias Modification (ABM) self-help intervention in 434 smokers who made a quit-attempt.
METHOD: Respondents were randomized to receive 6 sessions of ABM- or placebo-training in a period of 2 weeks. Smoking-related cognitions (e.g., self-efficacy and intention to quit) and cognitive biases (i.e., attentional and approach bias) for smoking-cues were assessed before training (pretest). Primary outcome-variable was continued abstinence, 6 months after baseline. Bias reduction at the posttraining assessment was the secondary outcome. A 2 × 2 mixed analysis of variance (ANOVA) and logistic regression analyses were conducted using the whole sample (N = 434) as well as subsamples of light to moderate smokers (<15 cigarettes, N = 115) and heavy smokers (15 or more cigarettes, N = 319). Conservative analyses (coding drop-outs as smokers) as well as complete case analyses were conducted.
RESULTS: The ABM training had no significant effect regarding bias reduction and no behavioral effects in the whole sample of smokers. Subsample analyses revealed a significant positive effect on continued abstinence in heavy smokers only (complete case analyses: odds ratio [OR] = 3.15; p = .02; confidence interval [CI] = 1.24-7.99; conservative analyses: OR = 2.49; p = .02; CI = 1.13-5.48).
CONCLUSION: Web-based ABM training is ineffective in fostering cognitive bias reduction and continued smoking abstinence. However, the positive effects in heavy smokers-as indicated by exploratory subsample analyses-warrant further research into the potential of multiple sessions ABM training to foster continued smoking abstinence in heavy smokers who make a quit-attempt. (PsycINFO Database Record
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