Changes in WM, GM, and neural activation in networks involving the PFC underlie the development of EFs during adolescence; however, adolescents with DSH have impaired EFs in the areas of inhibition, emotion regulation, shifting, and interpersonal functioning. DBT-A has been shown to be effective in treating these youth and the skills of mindfulness, emotion regulation, distress tolerance, interpersonal effectiveness, and “walking the middle path” are suited to treat their impaired EFs. As such, this study examined EF changes in adolescents receiving DBT-A and discussed implications for treatment and brain-behavior relationships. Ninety-three adolescents from a 16-week DBT-A program for DSH were administered the BRIEF-SR at baseline and post-treatment. There was improvement from the at-risk to non-clinical range on the Emotional Control, Shift, and Monitor scales, and the GEC. Significant effects for funding type and previous history of psychiatric hospitalizations were also observed. DBT-A appears to be effective for improving the EFs of adolescents with DSH and for specific subgroups. These EF profiles will assist clinicians in implementing DBT-A skills used during this period of neural development and inform future DBT-A outcome studies that utilize neuropsychological measures and neuroimaging techniques to examine EFs
School of Behavioral Health
Vermeersch, David A.
Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
Year Degree Awarded
Date (Title Page)
Library of Congress/MESH Subject Headings
Self-destructive behavior in adolescence; Adolescent psychotherapy; Self-Injurious Behavior; Behavior Therapy; Executive Functions (Neuropsychology)
Subject - Local
Deliberate Self-Harm; Dialectical Behavior Therapy; Behavior Rating Inventory of Executive Function; Prefrontal Cortex
Loma Linda University Libraries
This title appears here courtesy of the author, who has granted Loma Linda University a limited, non-exclusive right to make this publication available to the public. The author retains all other copyrights.
Smith, Alphonso A., "Executive Functioning Outcomes among Self-Harming Adolescents Receiving DBT-A" (2015). Loma Linda University Electronic Theses, Dissertations & Projects. Paper 328.
Loma Linda University Electronic Theses and Dissertations
Loma Linda University. Del E. Webb Memorial Library. University Archives