Arch Intern Med — Abstract: Randomized Controlled Trial of Cognitive Behavioral Therapy vs Standard Treatment to Prevent Recurrent Cardiovascular Events in Patients With Coronary Heart Disease: Secondary Prevention in Uppsala Primary Health Care Project (SUPRIM), January 24, 2011, Gulliksson et al. 171 (2): 134.
A CBT intervention program decreases the risk of recurrent CVD and recurrent acute myocardial infarction. This may have implications for secondary preventive programs in patients with coronary heart disease.
This in and of itself is a wonderful finding for those who have Cardiovascular Disease (CVD).
Anyone who has had a cardiac incident of any kind lives with the anxiety of having a heart attack. For the most part, most of us want to live and enjoy our lives…we do not want to die nor do we want to have a fatal heart attack if we can help it.
Cognitive behavior therapy can help any of us who have CVD. I would venture to say that a lot of us have CVD and do not even know it. So if you worry about it or have a family history understanding what CBT can do for your worries may be helpful.
For those of you who want to know what CBT involves, National Alliance on Mental Illness (NAMI) has this to say:
Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) is an empirically supported treatment that focuses on patterns of thinking that are maladaptive and the beliefs that underlie such thinking. For example, a person who is depressed may have the belief, “I’m worthless,” and a person with a phobia may have the belief, “I am in danger.” While the person in distress likely holds such beliefs with great conviction, with a therapist’s help, the individual is encouraged to view such beliefs as hypotheses rather than facts and to test out such beliefs by running experiments. Furthermore, those in distress are encouraged to monitor and log thoughts that pop into their minds (called “automatic thoughts”) in order to enable them to determine what patterns of biases in thinking may exist and to develop more adaptive alternatives to their thoughts. People who seek CBT can expect their therapist to be active, problem-focused, and goal-directed.via NAMI | Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy.
If you are interested in finding a therapist who practices CBT there are several sites on the internet that will help you locate one in your area.
Social workers who practice “clinical social work” can provide a CBT approach to therapy. To find a clinical social worker contact the NASW, National Association of Social Workers.
In the spirit of “full disclosure” I am a Licensed Clinical Social Worker.
If you need help… please get help. It could make the difference between life and death.