Behavioral treatment of self-injury, 1964 to 2000

Sung Woo Kahng, Brian A. Iwata, Adam B. Lewin

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

149 Scopus citations


A quantitative analysis of behavioral research on the treatment of self-injurious behavior (SIB) over the past 35 years is provided. A literature search covering the period from 1964 to 2000 yielded 396 articles (706 participants) on the treatment of SIB. Most research participants have been male and diagnosed with severe/profound mental retardation. The use of reinforcement-based interventions has increased during the past decade, whereas the use of punishment-based interventions has decreased slightly; both of these trends coincide with the increase in the use of functional assessments. Most treatments have been highly effective in reducing SIB; nevertheless, the disorder persists in spite of an abundance of research, suggesting that a greater emphasis should be placed on prevention.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)212-221+234
JournalAmerican Journal on Mental Retardation
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2002

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Rehabilitation
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Health Professions(all)


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