Effective treatment helps Danes with personality disorders

For seven years, Carsten René Jørgensen from the Department of Psychology and Behavioural Sciences at Aarhus University has collaborated with the Clinic for Personality Disorders, Aarhus University Hospital, Risskov on examining the extent to which modern psychoanalytic psychotherapy can help the Danes suffering from severe borderline personality disorders.

Among the first to examine these forms of modern psychoanalytic treatment of severe , the study shows a clear trend; a vast majority of patients do better after a two-year course of treatment.

- It is a patient population that has not been accustomed to receiving much treatment because it is a difficult group, and it has therefore been interesting to examine the effect of more intensive treatment, says Carsten René Jørgensen.

The study compares two forms of treatment. Supportive treatment with group therapy every two weeks and more with weekly sessions involving both and individual psychotherapy. Both forms of treatment are based on modern psychoanalytic principles.

To the researchers' surprise, both treatments proved highly effective. However, a distinctive feature of the intensive treatment was that patients in this group achieved a higher functional level, which probably indicates that they are more likely to gain a foothold in the .

From public support to the labour market

Borderline personality disorders are among the more serious personality disorders where patients have difficulty dealing with and they often experience pronounced fluctuations in their emotions and self-perception. Patients may also be self-harming and have a highly increased risk of abuse and , among other things.

That is also the reason why up to 80% of these patients are publicly supported. The research results indicate, however, that the modern psychoanalytic psychotherapy may be part of the solution to get some of the patients closer to the labour market and self-reliance.

- These are people who suffer greatly, but this treatment helps them to feel better, see their strengths and weaknesses more clearly and become better at handling relations. They will better equip them to start, for example, an education or part-time work, explains Carsten René Jørgensen.

From a socioeconomic point of view it may therefore be beneficial to treat this patient group. Carsten René Jørgensen explains that although the treatment itself requires extensive resources, studies have shown that the socioeconomic savings by offering treatment are higher because the cost of emergency room visits, hospitalisations, local initiatives, benefits and other forms of treatment are reduced.

Related Stories

Personality disorders cause emotional reactions in staff

date Apr 10, 2008

A study published today in the open access journal BMC Psychiatry suggests that the way in which professional care workers respond emotionally to substance abuse patients with personality disorders depends on the type of dis ...

Is it really bipolar disorder?

date Mar 25, 2010

A study from Rhode Island Hospital has shown that a widely-used screening tool for bipolar disorder may incorrectly indicate borderline personality disorder rather than bipolar disorder. In the article that appears online ...

PTSD psychotherapy is enhanced with D-cycloserine

date Jun 04, 2012

Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is among the most common, distressing, and disabling medical consequences of combat or other extremely stressful life events. The first-line treatment for PTSD is exposure therapy, a type ...

Recommended for you

The new normal? Addressing gun violence in America

date 50 minutes ago

Article Spotlight features summaries written in collaboration with authors of recently published articles by the Journals Program of the American Psychological Association. The articles are nominated by the editors as noteworthy ...

Demi Lovato gets vocal about mental illness

date 4 hours ago

(HealthDay)—Demi Lovato huddled in the back of her tour bus, eyes wet with tears as she watched a horde of fans streaming into the venue where she was about to play.

Acquiring 'perfect' pitch may be possible for some adults

date 4 hours ago

If you're a musician, this sounds too good to be true: University of Chicago psychologists have been able to train some adults to develop the prized musical ability of absolute pitch, and the training's effects ...

How men and women see each other when online dating

date 6 hours ago

In the world of online dating, nothing is as it seems. But that doesn't stop many of us from leaping to the wrong conclusions about people. A recent paper presented at the Annual Conference of the International ...

We trust kids to know what gender they are

date 7 hours ago

I will start by asking two questions: at what age did you know your gender, and do you think someone else had to tell you what it was? I'm director of mental health at a leading gender clinic in the US. Our clinic is a half-decade old – and in that short pe ...

User comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.