Teaching patients to self-inject: Pilot study of a treatment for injection anxiety and phobia in multiple sclerosis patients prescribed injectable medications

David C. Mohr*, Darcy Cox, Lucy Epstein, Arne Boudewyn

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

38 Scopus citations

Abstract

Medications are increasingly being developed for chronic illnesses that require regular injection. Usually it is recommended that, if possible, patients learn to inject themselves. Self-injection is associated with better adherence than injection by family or clinics. Yet large numbers of people have difficulty learning to self-inject due to injection anxiety or phobia. We present data from eight patients who went through a manualized 6-week cognitive behavioral treatment designed to increase self-efficacy and reduce anxiety. These patients were diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, were prescribed weekly intramuscular interferon beta-1a injections, and were unable to self-inject due to anxiety or phobia. Seven of the eight patients were able to inject within the 6 weeks of therapy. The eighth patient self-injected during an additional seventh session. Seven of the eight patients continued to self-inject at 3-month follow-up. Patients showed significant improvements in self-injection self-efficacy and injection anxiety.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)39-47
Number of pages9
JournalJournal of Behavior Therapy and Experimental Psychiatry
Volume33
Issue number1
DOIs
StatePublished - Mar 2002

Keywords

  • Anxiety
  • Cognitive behavior therapy
  • Injection
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Phobia

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Experimental and Cognitive Psychology
  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology
  • Psychiatry and Mental health

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