Table 1

Description of intervention, sample, and outcomes of included studies

First authorExperimental intervention and durationUsual intervention and durationSample and settingAge and sexOutcome measuresFollow up
Revised Behaviour Problem Checklist (RBPC), Global Severity Index (GSI) of the Brief Symptom Inventory (BSI), Social Competence Scale of the Child Behaviour Checklist (SCS-CBC) used to measure individualised emotional adjustment, adolescent behavioural problems, and adolescent social competence. Symptom Checklist-90-revised (SCL-90-R) used to measure parental psychiatric symptomatology. Family Adaptability and Cohesion Evaluation Scales (FACES-III), Family Assessment Measure (FAM-III), and/or Unrevealed Differences Questionnaire – Revised (UDQ-R) used to measure perceived and observed family functioning. Monitoring Index used to measure parental monitoring. Missouri Peer Relations Inventory (MPRI), Parent Peer Conformity Inventory (PPCI) used to measure peer relations. Self Report Delinquency Scale; EBC – Elliot Behavioural Checklist used to measure delinquency. PAS, Parent Attitude Survey; CBPC, parent completed Child Behaviour Problem Checklist; FES, Family Environment Scale; CPPBQ, Child Perception of Parent Behaviour Questionnaire.
Henggeler4 (USA) 1992Multisystemic therapy 13.4 weeks, 33 hours direct contact (SD 29), 24 hr a day case coverageUsual intervention – probation or institution84 serious juvenile offenders Referred by Juvenile JusticeMean age 15.2 years 77% male, 23% femaleArrests, incarceration SRD, FACES, MPRI, RBPC, SCL-90-R, SCS-CBC59 weeks
Chamberlain5 (USA) 1998Multidimensional treatment Foster care 6 month durationUsual treatment (group care) 6 month duration85 chronic juvenile offenders out of home placement. Referred by Juvenile Justice System12–17 years 100% maleRunning away Reunited with family Rate of criminal referrals, EBC1 year
Alexander15 (USA) 1973 Follow up study Klein21 (USA) 1977Short term family intervention 5–6 weeksNo treatment, Usual treatment (client centred family groups programme, psychodynamic family programme) 5–6 weeks86 juvenile delinquents and their families – recurrent “soft offences” e.g. shoplifting Referred by Juvenile Court13–16 years 44% male, 56% femaleOfficial offence reports Sibling court involvement6–18 months 2.5 to 3.5 years
Bank16 (USA) 1991Parent training Mean duration – 44.8 hours professional contact (23.3 hrs phone) and booster sessionsUsual intervention – community control (includes family therapy), >50 hours60 chronically offending delinquents, Referred by Juvenile CourtMean age 14 years 100% maleOfficial offence reports Institution time3 years
Borduin17 (USA) 1995Multisystemic therapy, Mean duration – 23.9 hours of treatment (SD 8.2)Usual intervention – individual therapy Mean duration – 28.6 hours of treatment (SD 9.8)176 serious juvenile offenders Referred by Juvenile Court12–17 years 68% male, 32% femaleArrests – number and type of crime, FACES, MPRI, RBPC, SCL-90-R, UDQ4 years
Emshoff18 (USA) 1983Adolescent diversion project – family condition Adolescent diversion project – multifocus condition 18 weeksUsual intervention (court control) 18 weeks73 juvenile delinquents – serious misdemeanours or non-serious felonies Referred by Juvenile CourtMean age 14.5 years 66% male, 34% femalePolice and court contacts Incarceration School data SRD6 months
Henggeler19 (USA) 1997Multisystemic therapy 122.6 days (SD 32.6 days)Usual intervention – probation, out of home placement 6 months155 violent and chronic juvenile offenders Referred by Juvenile Justice11–17 years 82% male, 18% femaleArrests rates, incarceration rate, GSI & BSI, FACES & FAM, MPRI & PPCI, RBPC, SRD, Monitoring Index1.7 years
Raue20 (Aust) 1985Group parent reciprocity training programme 4 weeks Individual – family based reciprocity training programme 4 weeksWait list control 4 weeks30 families of children rated by parents >1.5 SD above norm on Aggressiveness factor of the CBCL. Referred by schools, GP, agencies, parents10–16 years 73% males, 27% femalePAS CBPC CPPBQ2 months