NCBI ROFL: How rastafarians can help cure arachnophobia.

By ncbi rofl | May 30, 2011 7:00 pm

A spiderless arachnophobia therapy: comparison between placebo and treatment groups and six-month follow-up study.

“We describe a new arachnophobia therapy that is specially suited for those individuals with severe arachnophobia who are reluctant to undergo direct or even virtual exposure treatments. In this therapy, patients attend a computer presentation of images that, while not being spiders, have a subset of the characteristics of spiders. The Atomium of Brussels is an example of such an image. The treatment group (n = 13) exhibited a significant improvement (time x group interaction: P = .0026) when compared to the placebo group (n = 12) in a repeated measures multivariate ANOVA. A k-means clustering algorithm revealed that, after 4 weeks of treatment, 42% of the patients moved from the arachnophobic to the nonarachnophobic cluster. Six months after concluding the treatment, a follow-up study showed a substantial consolidation of the recovery process where 92% of the arachnophobic patients moved to the nonarachnophobic cluster.”

From the full text:
“The presentation used in the spiderless arachnophobia therapy (SLAT) consists of an initial set of 165 images, 124 of them having some features that resemble any of the characteristics (color, shape, texture, etc.) of a spider and were selected as explained in Section 2.3.1. Examples include the image of a person with a Rastafarian hair style, the Atomium of Brussels, a carousel, and so forth.”

Figure 1: Some SLAT images used in the treatment.

Thanks to Amos for today’s ROFL!

Photo: flickr/kronic.it and sirvival_kike

Related content:
Discoblog: NCBI ROFL: Ants in your pants?
Discoblog: NCBI ROFL: An unusual finding during screening colonoscopy: a cockroach!
Discoblog: NCBI ROFL: What’s better than an earwig with one penis?

WTF is NCBI ROFL? Read our FAQ!

CATEGORIZED UNDER: fun with animals, NCBI ROFL
  • http://www.jemmajadesaare.com Jemma

    I need this therapy in my life!

NEW ON DISCOVER
OPEN
CITIZEN SCIENCE
ADVERTISEMENT

Discover's Newsletter

Sign up to get the latest science news delivered weekly right to your inbox!

Discoblog

Quirky, funny, and surprising science news from the edge of the known universe.

About ncbi rofl

NCBI ROFL is the brainchild of two Molecular and Cell Biology graduate students at UC Berkeley and features real research articles from the PubMed database (which is housed by the National Center for Biotechnology information, aka NCBI) that they find amusing (ROFL is a commonly-used internet acronym for "rolling on the floor, laughing"). Follow us on twitter: @ncbirofl

ADVERTISEMENT

See More

ADVERTISEMENT
Collapse bottom bar
+

Login to your Account

X
E-mail address:
Password:
Remember me
Forgot your password?
No problem. Click here to have it e-mailed to you.

Not Registered Yet?

Register now for FREE. Registration only takes a few minutes to complete. Register now »