RESEARCH

Countless new studies show that psychotherapy provides the most effective forms of therapy available worldwide. For instance, London’s Tavistock clinic recently published a rigorous NHS study of long-term psychoanalysis as a treatment for depression and discovered that, for the most severely depressed, 18 months of analysis worked far better – and with much longer-lasting effects – than “treatment as usual” on the NHS, which included some CBT. Two years after the various treatments ended, 44% of analysis patients no longer met the criteria for major depression, compared to one-tenth of the others. The NHS study conducted by the Tavistock Clinic in 2005 also showed that chronically depressed patients receiving psychoanalytic therapy stood a 40% better chance of going into partial remission, during every six-month period of the research, than those receiving other treatments. (Burkeman 2016) You can read this study here:

Other recent studies have concluded that short-term psychoanalytic approaches are coming out as the preferred routes for many ailments, leaving recipients better off than 92% of all patients prior to therapy. One 2006 study tracking 1,400 people suffering from depression, anxiety and related conditions ruled in favour of short-term psychodynamic therapy and a 2008 study on borderline personality disorder concluded that only 13% of psychodynamic patients still had the diagnosis five years after the end of treatment, compared with 87% of the others. Some of these studies are summarised and linked below.

 

SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH STUDIES

 

The efficacy of psychodynamic psychotherapy

“Empirical evidence supports the efficacy of psychodynamic therapy. Effect sizes for psychodynamic therapy are as large as those reported for other therapies that have been actively promoted as “empirically supported” and “evidence based.” In addition, patients who receive psychodynamic therapy maintain therapeutic gains and appear to continue to improve after treatment ends. Finally, non psychodynamic therapies may be effective in part because the more skilled practitioners utilize techniques that have long been central to psychodynamic theory and practice. The perception that psychodynamic approaches lack empirical support does not accord with available scientific evidence and may reflect selective dissemination of research findings."

Read the study here.

Shedler J 2010 The efficacy of psychodynamic psychotherapy. Am Psychol. 2010 Feb-Mar;65(2):98-109. doi: 10.1037/a0018378.

 

Psychoanalytic psychotherapy for treatment-resistant depression

“For the most severely depressed, it concluded, 18 months of analysis worked far better – and with much longer-lasting effects – than “treatment as usual” on the NHS, which included CBT. Two years after the various treatments ended, 44% of analysis patients no longer met the criteria for major depression, compared to one-tenth of the others. Additionally, chronically depressed patients receiving psychoanalytic therapy stood a 40% better chance of going into partial remission, during every six-month period of the research, than those receiving other treatments.”

Fonagy, P., Rost, F., Carlyle, J.-a., McPherson, S., Thomas, R., Pasco Fearon, R.M., Goldberg, D. and Taylor, D. (2015), Pragmatic randomized controlled trial of long-term psychoanalytic psychotherapy for treatment-resistant depression: the Tavistock Adult Depression Study (TADS). World Psychiatry, 14: 312–321. doi:10.1002/wps.20267

Read the study here.

 
 
 

The Efficacy of Short-term Psychodynamic Psychotherapy

“Concluded: that short-term psychoanalytic approaches were at least as good as other routes for many ailments, leaving recipients better off than 92% of all patients prior to therapy.”

Leichsenring F, Rabung S, Leibing E. The Efficacy of Short-term Psychodynamic Psychotherapy in Specific Psychiatric Disorders A Meta-analysis. Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2004;61(12):1208–1216. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.61.12.1208

Read the study here.

 

Short-term psychodynamic psychotherapies for common mental disorders

“Tracked approximately 1,400 people suffering from depression, anxiety and related conditions and displayed favourable results for short-term psychodynamic therapy.”

Abbass AA, Kisely SR, Town JM, Leichsenring F, Driessen E, De Maat S, Gerber A, Dekker J, Rabung S, Rusalovska S, Crowe E. Short-term psychodynamic psychotherapies for common mental disorders. Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews 2014, Issue 7. Art. No.: CD004687. DOI: 10.1002/14651858.CD004687.pub4.

Read the study here.

 
 
 

8-Year Follow-Up of Patients Treated for Borderline Personality Disorder: Mentalization-Based Treatment Versus Treatment as Usual

“This was a 2008 study concluding that only 13% of psychodynamic patients still had the diagnosis five years after the end of treatment, compared with 87% of the other treatments.”

Anthony Bateman, F.R.C.Psych. and Peter Fonagy, Ph.D., F.B.A. 8-Year Follow-Up of Patients Treated for Borderline Personality Disorder: Mentalization-Based Treatment Versus Treatment as Usual. American Journal of Psychiatry 2008 165:5, 631-638 

You can read the study here

 

The Efficacy of Psychodynamic Psychotherapy

"Empirical evidence supports the efficacy of psychodynamic therapy. Effect sizes for psychodynamic therapy are as large as those reported for other therapies that have been actively promoted as “empirically supported” and “evidence based.” In addition, patients who receive psychodynamic therapy maintain therapeutic gains and appear to continue to improve after treatment ends. Finally, non psychodynamic therapies may be effective in part because the more skilled practitioners utilize techniques that have long been central to psychodynamic theory and practice. The perception that psychodynamic approaches lack empirical support does not accord with available scientific evidence and may reflect selective dissemination of research findings."

Shedler, J. The Efficacy of Psychodynamic Psychotherapy 2010 Feb-Mar;65(2):98-109. doi: 10.1037/a0018378.

Read the study here.

 

 

Clinician articles

Carter, John-Henry. 'Aggression and young people'. John-Henry Carter offers an understanding of aggressive impulses and the damage associated with repressing them'. BACP Children & Young People | December 2015. You can read the full article here

Carter, John-Henry. 'Sports, male identity, and waking up from ‘dreamland’'. You can read the full article here

Carter, John-Henry. 'Carter backs time to talk'. RPA Journal 2016. You can read the full article here

Carter, John-Henry. 'Retiring Rugby stars and the real risk of depression'. The Times. You can read the full article here

Carter, John-Henry. 'A question of meaning: Psychodynamic reflections on rugby, winning and losing'. Psychodynamic Practice 2015. You can read the full article here

McDonald, Laura. 'Appearances and it's messages'. Laura McDonald writes about how young people’s embodied self – and the often superficially conflicting messages sent by them – can guide our work as counsellors. BACP Children & Young People | December 2015. You can read the full article here

McDonald, Laura. 'First Love'. Laura McDonald discusses the importance of romantic relationships in adolescent development and the need for therapists to revisit their own feelings as adolescents before trying to make sense of what happens in the therapy room. BACP Children & Young People | March 2015. You can read the full article here

McDonald, Laura. 'Shaking the tree'. Laura McDonald looks at the importance of considering family relationships when counselling with young people. The influence of home is never absent. BACP Children & Young People | December 2017. You can read the full article here.

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