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Archives of Clinical Psychiatry (São Paulo)

versão impressa ISSN 0101-6083versão On-line ISSN 1806-938X


GOMES, Bernardo Carramão  e  LAFER, Beny. Group psychotherapy for bipolar disorder patients. Rev. psiquiatr. clín. [online]. 2007, vol.34, n.2, pp.84-89. ISSN 1806-938X.

BACKGROUND: In the last years there has been a growing number of studies using psychotherapy approaches in the treatment of bipolar patients. However, little is known about the effects of these approaches. OBJECTIVE: Evaluate the effectiveness of Group Therapy in the treatment of bipolar affective disorder. METHOD: Review of the literature using Medline, Lilacs, PubMed e ISI, selecting English language articles published between the years of 1975 and 2005. The reference sections of the selected articles, review articles and specialized books were also consulted. Only randomized controlled trails, with more than twenty subjects, were selected. RESULTS: Five published studies were identified; three of them have been published in the last five years. In three of the selected studies, models of Psychoeducation were used, showing an increase in the adherence to the pharmacological treatment. One showed reduction in the number of relapses and hospital admissions. The other two studies combined psychoeducation with some other form of psychotherapeutic approach. In one of them, not only an increase in the remission period but also symptom reduction was identified, concerning manic episodes. DISCUSSION: There has been a growing interest in evidence based psychotherapy interventions for the treatment of bipolar affective disorder over the last years. This fact contrasts with the low number of studies dedicated to group therapy, which could be very useful in institutions where a great number of patients are assisted. The clinical complexities of this disease, the presence of several comorbidities and the different levels of adherence to pharmacotherapy demand the development of diverse therapeutic options, in order to meet the needs of each individual. The studies show that group therapy could be an effective treatment option that deserves better investigations so that it can be used in clinical practice.

Palavras-chave : Bipolar disorder; group therapy; psychotherapy; patient education; treatment.

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