Objective: Pharmacotherapy, cognitive-behavioral therapy (CBT), and psychodynamic therapy are most frequently applied to treat mental disorders. However, whether psychodynamic therapy is as efficacious as other empirically supported treatments is not yet clear. Thus, for the first time the equivalence of psychodynamic therapy to treatments established in efficacy was formally tested. The authors controlled for researcher allegiance effects by including representatives of psychodynamic therapy and CBT, the main rival psychotherapeutic treatments (adversarial collaboration).
Method: The authors applied the formal criteria for testing equivalence, implying a particularly strict test: a priori defining a margin compatible with equivalence (g=0.25), using the two one-sided test procedure, and ensuring the efficacy of the comparator. Independent raters assessed effect sizes, study quality, and allegiance. A systematic literature search used the following criteria: randomized controlled trial of manual-guided psychodynamic therapy in adults, testing psychodynamic therapy against a treatment with efficacy established for the disorder under study, and applying reliable and valid outcome measures. The primary outcome was “target symptoms” (e.g., depressive symptoms in depressive disorders).
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The participant will model how a specific form of psychotherapy demonstrates equivalence in efficacy to established treatments.
This program is designed for all psychiatrists in clinical practice, residents in Graduate Medical Education programs, medical students interested in psychiatry, and other physicians who wish to advance their current knowledge of clinical medicine.
Estimated Time to Complete
Duration: 1 hour
Begin Date: October 1, 2017
End Date: September 30, 2019
How to Earn Credit
In order to earn CME credit, subscribers should read through the material presented in the article. After reading the article, complete the quiz and submit your evaluation and study hours (up to 1 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™). A score of 60% or higher is required to receive credit.
The American Psychiatric Association (APA) is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians.
The APA designates this journal-based CME activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™. Physicians should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.
Faculty and Planner Disclosures
Title: Psychodynamic Therapy: As Efficacious as Other Empirically Supported Treatments? A Meta-Analysis Testing Equivalence of Outcomes
Authors: Christiane Steinert, Ph.D., Thomas Munder, Ph.D., Sven Rabung, Ph.D., Jürgen Hoyer, Ph.D., Falk Leichsenring, D.Sc.
Affiliations: From the Department of Psychosomatics and Psychotherapy, University of Giessen, Giessen, Germany (C.S., F.L.); Psychologische Hochschule Berlin, Berlin (T.M.); the Department of Psychology, Alps-Adriatic University of Klagenfurt, Klagenfurt, Austria (S.R.); and the Institute of Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy, Technical University Dresden, Dresden, Germany (J.H.).
Disclosures: The authors report no financial relationships with commercial interests.
Discussion of unapproved or investigational use of products*: No.
*APA policy requires disclosure by CME authors of unapproved or investigational use of products discussed in CME programs. Off-label use of medications by individual physicians is permitted and common. Decisions about off-label use can be guided by scientific literature and clinical experience.
Robert Freedman, M.D. (Editor-in-Chief, AJP); Susan K. Schultz, M.D. (Deputy Editor, AJP); Michael D. Roy (Editorial Director, AJP); Michael A. Pogachar (Online Content Manager, Journals).
Dr. Schultz has received research support from the Alzheimer’s Disease Cooperative Study for projects conducted in partnership with Toyama Chemical Company and in partnership with Eli Lilly and Company. Dr. Freedman, Mr. Roy, and Mr. Pogachar report no financial relationships with commercial interests.
Optimal System Configuration:
- Flash Player: Adobe Flash Player 10.1+
- Browser: Firefox 3+, Internet Explorer 8.0+, Safari 4.0+, or Google Chrome 7.0+
- Operating System: Windows XP+ or Mac OS X 10.4+
- Internet Connection: 1 Mbps or higher
- Screen Resolution: 1024 x 768 pixels.
- Windows PC:500-MHz Pentium II; Windows XP or higher; 128 MB RAM; Video Card at least 64MB of video memory; Sound Card at least 16-bit; Macromedia Flash Player 10 or higher, audio playback with speakers for programs with video content; Firefox 1.1+, Internet Explorer 7.0+, Safari 1.0+, Google Chrome, or Opera
- Macintosh: Mac OS X 10.3 or higher with latest updates installed; 1.83MHz Intel Core Duo or faster; RAM: 128MB or more; Video Card: at least 64MB of video memory; Sound Card: at least 16-bit
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