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Papers of the Week

Papers: 22 Apr 2023 - 28 Apr 2023

Clinical, Pediatric, Psychology, Review

Human Studies, Neurobiology

Abdominal/Pelvic Pain, Inflammation/Inflammatory, Psychological/Comorbidities

2023 Apr 27

Cogn Behav Ther


A systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized control trials: efficacy of cognitive behavioral therapies for the management of functional and recurrent abdominal pain disorders in children and adolescents.


Chen JY, Chen SN, Lee CH, Huang YJ


Cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) is effective for pain relief in children and adolescents with functional abdominal pain disorders (FAPDs). However, few studies have focused on the FAPDs specifically and the medium-term or long-term results of CBT. In this meta-analysis, we investigated the efficacy of CBT in pediatric FAPDs and unclassified chronic or recurrent abdominal pain (CAP and RAP, respectively). We searched the PubMed, Embase, and Cochrane Library databases for related randomized controlled trials until August 2021. Eventually, 10 trials with 872 participants were included. The methodological quality of the studies was assessed, and data on two primary and four secondary outcomes of interest were extracted. We used the standardized mean difference (SMD) to measure the same outcome, and precisions of effect sizes were reported as 95% confidence intervals (CIs). We found that CBT had significantly positive effects on reducing pain intensity immediately (SMD: -0.54 [CI: -0.9, -0.19],  = 0.003), 3 months after the intervention (SMD: -0.55; [CI: -1.01, -0.1],  = 0.02) and 12 months after the intervention (SMD: -0.32; [CI: -0.56, -0.08],  = 0.008). CBT also reduced the severity of gastrointestinal symptoms, depression, and solicitousness, improved the quality of life and decreased the total social cost. Future studies should consider uniform interventions in the control group and comparing different CBT delivery methods.