Agents for Change: The 10th Invest in ME International ME Conference, 2015 - Part 1
The 10th Invest in ME International ME Conference (IIMEC10) was held, as usual, in the Lecture Theatre at 1 Birdcage Walk in Westminster on May 29th, 2015.
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2013 British Association for Behavioural & Cognitive Psychotherapies (BABCP) conference abstracts

Discussion in 'Latest ME/CFS Research' started by Dolphin, Jul 29, 2013.

  1. Esther12

    Esther12 Senior Member

    A bit OT, but relevant to the discussion imo:

    Looked like full text was available from:

    I've not read it, so wasn't sure if it was worth a new thread.
  2. Simon


    Monmouth, UK
    Another post on this from me, because I think this paper - or the non-appearance of a full paper - is very significant.

    Looks like this abstract has appeared at 4 conferences: the first 3 appear to be the most rigorous, and all basically conclude "nothing doing":
    - Clincal Methodology conf
    - 33rd Annual Conference of the International Society for Clinical Biostatistics
    - Ghent uni symposium on "Causal mediation Analysis"

    While the altogether less, er, 'technical' "2013 British Association for Behavioural & Cognitive Psychotherapies (BABCP)" makes it sound like a big deal, and ignores the serious methodology issues raised in the first 3 abstracts.

    A key problem is working out cause and effect: do attitudes change because the patient had improved, or are they the cause? The presumed 'mediators' changed during the therapy but not after - but the same things is pretty-well true of the outcomes too, with almost all the gains made by 6 months. So changes in attitudes could reflect lower levels of fatigue, not vice versa. I think the IV methods in the original abstracts is trying to probe this problem - and found only very weak mediation effects.

    Also, when you only have a modest effects to look at in the first place (ignoring self-report issues), and when the 'control' improvement is bigger than the incremental gain from therapy, then mediation analysis is never likely to find very much. A partial-mediator of a smallish effect is going to be lost in the noise.

    It's pretty tough to sustain a BPS theory when your analysis of your flagship study can't find the evidence that CBT/GET changing beliefs and behaviours is responsible for any gains. Especially not when you set up the study in such a way that you should be able to find such evidence, if it was really there.
  3. Gijs

    Gijs Senior Member

    This study suggest causality i.e. that CVS is a form of an anxiety disorder. This study is not objective and must be exluded as ''evidence bases science'.
  4. user9876

    user9876 Senior Member

    Another issue is due to the lack of a prepublished statistical analysis plan. How long have they been trawling through different techniques to find the results they wanted.

    I did once read a psych paper (on decision making not a BPS one) where they explicitly trawled through many techniques till they found one giving significant results.
    Esther12 and Sam Carter like this.
  5. Simon


    Monmouth, UK
    They haven't even post-published the statistical analysis plan, despite saying they were going to do so.

    Amazing that paper should be so explicit about it's dodgy practice, I know it has been suggested that this is a widespread but unreported research practice.

    Not sure how much trawling they did in practice on mediation; the BJK method they used initially is one of the standard ones, I think, while using IVs seems to be more sophisticated (hence its presentation at specialist conferences) - and gave a worse result.
  6. biophile

    biophile Places I'd rather be.

    The statistical analysis plan has since been published:

    No mention of mediators, moderators, predictors (aside cost-analyses), or processes.

    So we could be in for some more post-hoc dubiousness?
    peggy-sue, Valentijn and Sean like this.
  7. alex3619

    alex3619 Senior Member

    Logan, Queensland, Australia
    And if all else fails, redefine your terms so that success now has a definition that includes failure.:devil:
    peggy-sue, Valentijn and biophile like this.

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