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Table of Contents
Vol. 78, No. 5, 2009
Issue release date: August 2009
Section title: Special Article
Psychother Psychosom 2009;78:265–274
(DOI:10.1159/000228247)

Short-Term Psychodynamic Psychotherapy for Somatic Disorders

Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Clinical Trials

Abbass A. · Kisely S. · Kroenke K.
aDepartment of Psychiatry, Centre for Emotions and Health, and Departments of bCommunity Health and Epidemiology and cPsychiatry, Dalhousie University, Halifax, N.S., Canada; dSchool of Medicine, Griffith University, Meadowbrook, Qld., Australia; eRegenstrief Institute, Indiana University School of Medicine, Indianapolis, Ind., USA

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Article / Publication Details

First-Page Preview
Abstract of Special Article

Received: 2/19/2008
Accepted: 7/18/2008
Published online: 7/11/2009

Number of Print Pages: 10
Number of Figures: 3
Number of Tables: 1

ISSN: 0033-3190 (Print)
eISSN: 1423-0348 (Online)

For additional information: http://www.karger.com/PPS

Abstract

Background: Somatic symptom disorders are common, disabling and costly. Individually provided short-term psychodynamic psychotherapies (STPP) have shown promising results. However, the effectiveness of STPP for somatic symptom disorders has not been reviewed. Methods: We undertook a systematic review of randomized controlled trials and controlled before and after studies. The outcomes included psychological symptoms, physical symptoms, social-occupational function, healthcare utilization and treatment continuation. Results: A total of 23 studies met the inclusion criteria and covered a broad range of somatic disorders. Thirteen were RCTs and 10 were case series with pre-post outcome assessment. Of the included studies, 21/23 (91.3%), 11/12 (91.6%), 16/19 (76.2%) and 7/9 (77.8%) reported significant or possible effects on physical symptoms, psychological symptoms, social-occupational function and healthcare utilization respectively. Meta-analysis was possible for 14 studies and revealed significant effects on physical symptoms, psychiatric symptoms and social adjustment which were maintained in long-term follow-up. Random-effect modeling attenuated some of these relationships. There was a 54% greater treatment retention in the STPP group versus controls. Conclusion: STPP may be effective for a range of medical and physical conditions underscoring the role of patients’ emotional adjustment in overall health. Future research should include high-quality randomized and clinical effectiveness studies with attention to healthcare use and costs.


Article / Publication Details

First-Page Preview
Abstract of Special Article

Received: 2/19/2008
Accepted: 7/18/2008
Published online: 7/11/2009

Number of Print Pages: 10
Number of Figures: 3
Number of Tables: 1

ISSN: 0033-3190 (Print)
eISSN: 1423-0348 (Online)

For additional information: http://www.karger.com/PPS


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Drug Dosage: The authors and the publisher have exerted every effort to ensure that drug selection and dosage set forth in this text are in accord with current recommendations and practice at the time of publication. However, in view of ongoing research, changes in goverment regulations, and the constant flow of information relating to drug therapy and drug reactions, the reader is urged to check the package insert for each drug for any changes in indications and dosage and for added warnings and precautions. This is particularly important when the recommended agent is a new and/or infrequently employed drug.
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