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Table 1 A summary of study characteristics

From: The effectiveness of psychosocial interventions for anxiety in children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorder: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Source Population No. of participants Age rangea Intervention Delivery Parental/caregiver involvement Comparison Outcome measures SMD
Chalfant et al., 2007 [30] Children with HFAD or Asperger disorder and a primary anxiety disorder. 47 (35 male, 12 female) 8-13 years (mean 10.8, SD 1.35) CBT (n = 28) Group sessions (6-8 children/group). - WL/TAU (n = 19) SCAS-P 4.27
SCAS-C 2.64
McConachie et al., 2013 [37] Children with ASD and at least one anxiety disorder. 32 (28 male, 4 female) 9-13 years and 11 months CBT (n = 17) Group sessions (no./group not reported). Separate parallel groups for parents. WL/TAU (n = 15) ADIS-C 0.43
SCAS-P 0.20
SCAS-C 0.04
McNally Keehn et al., 2013 [38] Children with an ASD and at least one primary anxiety disorder of SAD, GAD or SoP. 22 (21 male, 1 female) 8-14 years (mean 11.26, SD 1.53) CBT (n = 12) Individual sessions. - WL/TAU (n = 10) ADIS-P 1.35
SCAS-P 0.91
SCAS-C 0.47
Reaven et al., 2012 [39] Children with ASD and clinically significant anxiety symptoms. 50 (48 male, 2 female) 7-14 years (mean 10.4 years, SD 1.7) CBT (n = 24) Children only group sessions (3-6 children/ group), parent and children sessions, parent-child dyad sessions. Parent and children group sessions, parent only and child only group sessions, parent-child dyad sessions. WL/TAU (n = 26) ADIS-P 0.60
Schohl et al., 2013 [43] Adolescents with ASD and social problems. 63 (47 male, 11 female, 5 not specified) 11-16 years (mean 13.65 years, SD 1.50) Social skills intervention (n = 34) Group sessions (≤10 adolescents per group). Separate parallel groups for parents. WL/TAU (n = 29) SIAS 0.16
Sofronoff et al., 2005 [32] Children with AS and anxiety symptoms. 71 (62 male, 9 female) 10-12 years CBT Child only (n = 23). CBT Child + parent (n = 25) Group sessions (3 children/ group, allocated by age and sex, with girls grouped together) Separate parallel groups for parents (12-13 parents/group) WL/TAU (n = 23) SCAS-P 0.09
Storch et al., 2013 [29] Children with ASD and a primary diagnosis of SAD, GAD or OCD. 45 (36 male, 9 female) 7-11 years CBT (n = 24) Individual sessions. Separate parallel parent sessions +/- parental involvement in child-focused components. WL/TAU (n = 21) PARS 1.38
MASC 0.48
RCMAS 0.26
Sung et al., 2011 [40] Children and adolescents with ASD and anxiety-related issues. 70 (66 male, 4 female) 9-16 years CBT (n = 36) Group sessions (3-4 participants/ group). - Social recreational group program (n = 34). SCAS-C 0.07
White et al., 2013 [41] Children with ASD and at least one of SoP, GAD, SP, or SAD. 30 (23 male, 7 female) 12-17 years (mean 14.58, SD 15 years) CBT (n = 15) Individual and group sessions (no./group not reported). Parent education and coaching. WL/TAU (n = 15) PARS 0.32
CASI Anx 0.37
Wood et al., 2009 [42] Children with ASD and SAD, SoP or OCD. 40 (27 male, 13 female) 7–11 years, mean 9.20, SD 1.49 CBT (n =17) Individual sessions. 60 min of each session spent with parents/family. WL/TAU (n = 23) ADIS-C/P 2.47
MASC-P 1.21
MASC-C -0.03
  1. SMD Standardised mean difference, HFAD High Functioning Autistic Disorder, SAD Separation anxiety disorder, GAD Generalised anxiety disorder, SoP Social phobia, SP Specific phobia, OCD Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, CBT Cognitive behavioural therapy, WL/TAU Wait list/Treatment as usual, SCAS-C/P The Spence Children’s Anxiety Scale – Child/Parent, ADIS C/P The anxiety Disorders Interview Schedule – Child/Parent, SIAS The social Interaction Anxiety Scale, PARS The Pediatric Anxiety Rating Scale, MASC The Multidimensional Anxiety Scale for Children, RCMAS The Revised Children's Manifest Anxiety Scale, CASI-Anx Child and Adolescent Symptom Inventory-4 ASD Anxiety Scale
  2. aMean and SD reported when data was available