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Tuesday, October 9 • 5:15pm - 5:35pm
Symposium 20, Talk 3. "Use of Virtual Reality to identify liability to social anxiety and paranoid ideas in the Danish High Risk and Resilience study"

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Merete Nordentoft1,2, Anne Søndergaard1,2, Maja Gregersen1,2, Nicoline Hemager1,2, Kerstin Jessica Plessen2,3, Niels Ole Mors2,4, Anne A. E. Thorup1,2,3; 1Mental Health Center Copenhagen, Psychiatric Research Unit, Mental Health Services, Capital Region of Denmark, University of Copenhagen, 2The Lundbeck Foundation Initiative for Integrative Psychiatric Research (iPSYCH), 3Child and Adolescent Mental Health Center, Research Unit, Mental Health Services, Capital Region of Denmark,&  University of Copenhagen, 4Research Department P, Aarhus University Hospital, Risskov, Denmark
The Danish High Risk and Resilience Study - VIA7 is a representative nationwide cohort study of 522 7-year old children of parents with schizophrenia, bipolar disorder or neither of these disorders. The children and their parents were thoroughly examined, when the children were seven years old. We are now reassessing all the children at age 11 and their families. In self-reports, high risk children more often report being bullied, but it is uncertain whether this is a sad fact or a marker of aberrant attributional style. A standardized social situation in a virtual reality scenario will help us to identify any liability to social anxiety and paranoid ideas. Therefore, we have developed a Virtual Reality (VR) scenario, which is a sensitive, standardised and direct measure of liability to anxiety, and paranoid ideas, which can be subtle signs of emerging mental disorders. VR can increase validity of assessments, by standardizing the exposure. Preliminary results from the first 200 children will be presented This VR format has the potential to become a crucial element in cognitive behavioural treatment of phobia, PTSD, social withdrawal and paranoid ideas, because exposure is considered as a very valuable element in cognitive behavioural therapy. However, exposure in real life can be hard to organize, and the VR animation allows exposure to challenging situations in an immersive, but also protected and controlled environment. The difficulty of the exposure can be changed, e.g. patients can be exposed to more hostility or higher levels of laughter.


Merete Nordentoft

Copenhagen University

Tuesday October 9, 2018 5:15pm - 5:35pm EDT
American Ballroom-Center Westin Copley Place, fourth floor

Attendees (8)