The purpose of this study is to determine the feasibility and acceptability of utilizing an
adapted form (i.e. IPT-MBD) of a psychosocial intervention, Interpersonal Psychotherapy for
Depressed Adolescents, for youth with severe mood dysregulation (SMD) or disruptive mood
dysregulation disorder (DMDD).
The investigators hypothesize that retention rates will be >80%, satisfaction scores will
average 6 (high) on a 7 point satisfaction scale, and that youth who receive the IPT
intervention will have overall improvement in SMD/DMDD symptoms.
This research is being done to learn more about how to help teenagers with a sad or angry
mood, and emotional responses out of proportion to what would be expected in a situation.
Together these symptoms are called Severe Mood Dysregulation (SMD), a research diagnosis, or
disruptive mood dysregulation disorder (DMDD), a newer clinical diagnosis. Currently, there
is no standard treatment for teens that have SMD/DMDD. These teens usually receive
medication and some type of talk therapy. This research is being done to compare two types
of talk therapy to see which is most effective in helping teens with SMD/DMDD. Investigators
will compare treatment as usual (TAU) with Interpersonal Psychotherapy for Youth with Mood
and Behavior Dysregulation (IPT-MBD). Investigators do not know if TAU and IPT-MBD work just
as well, or if one is better than the other. When this study is over, investigators hope
there will be a better idea of how to study treatments for teens with SMD/DMDD.
For those participants who receive IPT-MBD, are prescribed an antipsychotic, and have
significant improvement in symptoms, investigators will gradually taper the antipsychotic
- Male and female subjects, ages 12 to 17 years, who meet criteria for severe mood
dysregulation (SMD) as defined by NIMH criteria or for disruptive mood dysregulation
- Subject has an estimated IQ >70 on the Kaufman Brief Intelligence Test (KBIT-
- Subjects will have continuously resided with a legal guardian who has known the
adolescent well for at least one year before study entry and is legally able to sign
the consent form.
- Children's Global Assessment Scale (CGAS) ≤ 60
- CGI-S (SMD) ≥ 4
- Participant and guardian must agree to have therapy sessions audiotaped for training
- Subject poses a significant risk for dangerousness to self or others. Risk will be
determined by clinical history, clinical diagnostic interview and KSADS-PL interview
of parent and patient by clinician.
- Subject suffers from a concomitant medical or psychiatric comorbidity that makes this
study protocol inadvisable (either the treatment is contraindicated or the disorder
is not the primary focus of treatment).
- Subject meets DSM-IV criteria for current alcohol or substance dependence or current
use (defined as the past 4 weeks).
- Primary caretaker does not speak English or is not capable of completing study
- Pregnant females.