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Revista de Psiquiatria do Rio Grande do Sul

versão impressa ISSN 0101-8108


JUNG, Simone Isabel; NUNES, Lúcia Tiellet  e  EIZIRIK, Cláudio Laks. Assessment of psychoanalytic psychotherapy outcomes. Rev. psiquiatr. Rio Gd. Sul [online]. 2007, vol.29, n.2, pp.184-196. ISSN 0101-8108.

INTRODUCTION: This article reports a retrospective cohort investigation, which assessed the effectiveness of psychoanalytic psychotherapy in adult patients at a community health center in the city of Porto Alegre, Brazil. METHODs: The sample was composed of 34 patients, who were divided into two groups: group 1, 17 patients who underwent treatment for up to 11 months (mean 6.4 months) and group 2, 17 patients who underwent psychotherapy for 1 year or longer (mean 24.7 months). The patients were contacted after their psychotherapeutic treatment was over, in average 20.9 months (group 1) and 29.9 months (group 2). Instruments used were semi-structured interview, effectiveness questionnaire and global assessment of functioning scale. Independent experts applied the global assessment of functioning scale in the initial interview (carried out by the psychotherapist and found in the institution's files), as well as in the follow-up interview. RESULTS: The patients significantly improved their global functioning, when initial assessment was compared to psychotherapy follow-up (p < 0.001), regardless of treatment group. Patients and experts considered psychotherapy satisfactory. However, the experts' opinion was not related to the patients' opinion. CONCLUSIONS: Psychoanalytic psychotherapy was effective in the studied sample. Length of psychotherapy, when assessed alone, was not a decisive factor for treatment outcome, i.e., other factors should also be taken into account when assessing outcomes, such as therapeutic relationship, quality of object relations, self-awareness potential and reaction to interpretations. Most patients were found to be satisfied with outcomes in a shorter time than their psychotherapists would consider optimal.

Palavras-chave : Psychotherapy; psychoanalytic therapy; outcome assessment [health care]; outcome assessment of therapeutic interventions; research.

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