Panic disorder, with or without agoraphobia (PDA or PD, respectively), is a major public health problem. After having established a PD diagnosis based on the DSM or the ICD systems, the Panic Disorder Severity Scale (PDSS) is the most widely used interview-based instrument for assessing disorder severity. There is also a self-report version of the instrument (PDSS-SR); both exist in a Swedish translation but their psychometric properties remain untested.
We studied 221 patients with PD/PDA recruited to a randomized controlled preference trial of cognitive-behavioral and brief panic-focused psychodynamic psychotherapy. In addition to PDSS and PDSS-SR the participants completed self-reports including the Clinical Outcome in Routine Evaluation - Outcome Measure, Montgomery Åsberg Depression Rating Scale, Sheehan Disability Scale, Bodily Sensations Questionnaire and the Mobility Inventory for Agoraphobia.
PDSS and PDSS-SR possessed excellent psychometric properties (internal consistency, test-retest reliability) and convergent validity. A single factor structure for both versions was not confirmed. In terms of clinical utility, the PDSS had very high inter-rater reliability and correspondence with PD assessed via structured diagnostic interview. Both versions were sensitive to the effects of PD-focused treatment, although subjects scored systematically lower on the self-report version.
The study confirmed the reliability and validity of the Swedish versions of PDSS and PDSS-SR. Both versions were highly sensitive to the effects of two PD-focused treatments and can be used both in clinical and research settings. However, further investigation of the factor structures of both the PDSS and PDSS-SR is warranted.
To evaluate the effectiveness of interpersonal therapy (IPT) implemented by well-supervised, novice IPT therapists in treating adolescents with moderate to severe mood disorders of lengthy duration.
Twenty-five adolescents with moderate to severe major depression, lasting an average of 8 months, received 12 weeks of IPT. All participants were assessed with the Schedule for Affective Disorders and Schizophrenia for School-Age Children-Present and Lifetime Version, the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression (HRSD), and the Children's Global Assessment Scale (C-GAS) at baseline and follow-up.
The majority of participants improved substantially on the BDI, the HRSD, and the C-GAS; 84% met remission criteria on the HRSD (score
This study examined the long-term effectiveness of a treatment model at a Swedish therapeutic community for young adults with severe personality disorders, combining milieu therapy and inpatient long-term psychodynamic psychotherapy.
Data were collected for the 56 residents between 1994 and 2008 at intake, termination and 2-year follow-up. Patient residency ranged from 2 to 60 months, with average psychotherapy duration of 30 months. Self-rated outcome was measured using the Symptom Checklist-90-R. Expert-rated outcomes comprised the Global Assessment of Functioning, the Strauss-Carpenter Outcome Scale and the Integration/Sealing-over Scale. A series of mixed-model analyses of variance with one fixed factor (time) was performed to examine the outcomes for the total sample of completers. Effect sizes for within-group change and percentages of improved, unchanged and deteriorated patients were calculated for patients participating in the data collection on all three time points.
All outcome measures showed significant improvement on a group level from intake to discharge. Most patients had maintained the therapeutic gains at the 2-year follow-up. The effect sizes were high and the Reliable Change Index provided evidence of good outcome for 92% of the patients at follow-up. The expert ratings gave somewhat larger effect sizes than the patients' self-ratings.
The effect sizes and success rates are at a comparable level with corresponding studies of long-term treatments of personality disorders. Most patients had a substantial individual improvement from intake to termination and follow-up. This indicates the effectiveness of this highly specialized and intensive treatment approach for severely disturbed young adult patients.
The purpose of the present study was to compare symptom load in youth groups treated with three Swedish Blueprint programmes - Functional Family Therapy (FFT), Multisystemic Therapy (MST) and Multidimensional Treatment Foster Care (MTFC) - to see if symptom load matches the intensity of the treatment model as expected. These youth groups were also compared with in- and outpatients from child and adolescent psychiatry, and a normal comparison group. In addition, we compared the symptom load of their mothers. Symptom load was measured by the Achenbach System of Empirically Based Assessment (ASEBA) in the adolescents, and by the Symptom Checklist 90 in their mothers. The results showed that youth in the MST and MTFC studies had a higher symptom load than in the FFT study, and the same pattern of results was found in their mothers. It is concluded that there seems to be a reasonable correspondence between the offered resources and the symptom load among youth and parents; treatment methods with higher intensity have been offered to youth with higher symptom load. The correlation between internalized and externalized symptoms was high in all study groups. The MST and MTFC groups had an equally high total symptom load as the psychiatric inpatient sample.
The partial opiate-receptor agonist buprenorphine has been suggested for treatment of heroin dependence, but there are few long-term and placebo-controlled studies of its effectiveness. We aimed to assess the 1-year efficacy of buprenorphine in combination with intensive psychosocial therapy for treatment of heroin dependence.
40 individuals aged older than 20 years, who met DSM-IV criteria for opiate dependence for at least 1 year, but did not fulfil Swedish legal criteria for methadone maintenance treatment were randomly allocated either to daily buprenorphine (fixed dose 16 mg sublingually for 12 months; supervised daily administration for a least 6 months, possible take-home doses thereafter) or a tapered 6 day regimen of buprenorphine, thereafter followed by placebo. All patients participated in cognitive-behavioural group therapy to prevent relapse, received weekly individual counselling sessions, and submitted thrice weekly supervised urine samples for analysis to detect illicit drug use. Our primary endpoint was 1-year retention in treatment and analysis was by intention to treat.
1-year retention in treatment was 75% and 0% in the buprenorphine and placebo groups, respectively (p=0.0001; risk ratio 58.7 [95% CI 7.4-467.4]). Urine screens were about 75% negative for illicit opiates, central stimulants, cannabinoids, and benzodiazepines in the patients remaining in treatment.
The combination of buprenorphine and intensive psychosocial treatment is safe and highly efficacious, and should be added to the treatment options available for individuals who are dependent on heroin.
Comment In: Lancet. 2003 May 31;361(9372):1907; author reply 1907-812788596
Comment In: Lancet. 2003 Feb 22;361(9358):634-512606172
Comment In: Lancet. 2003 May 31;361(9372):1906-7; author reply 1907-812788595
Rates of completion, complications, and outcome were examined in a sample of poorly functioning patients who participated in a group-oriented day treatment program for patients with personality disorders.
The study was a naturalistic prospective study of 183 patients admitted to a day treatment program in Oslo, Norway. The program consists of a combination of group analytically oriented groups and cognitive-behavioral groups. The Global Severity Index (GSI) of the Symptom Check List, the circumplex version of the Inventory of Interpersonal Problems (IIP-C), and the Global Assessment of Functioning (GAF) were administered at admission and discharge.
A total of 138 [corrected] patients (77 percent) completed the day treatment program. Few patients experienced treatment complications. Effect sizes for GAF, GSI, and IIP-C scores for treatment completers were in the medium-to-high range, indicating a fair level of improvement. Patients' rating of benefit was positive.
The results are promising as a first step toward development of a cost-efficient comprehensive long-term treatment program for patients with severe personality disorders.
To investigate the effect of integrated treatment on negative, psychotic and disorganised symptoms in patients with first episode psychosis.
A RCT comparing integrated treatment (IT) with standard treatment (ST) was conducted, including 547 patients, aged 18-45, diagnosed with schizophrenia spectrum disorders. All patients were assessed with SCAN, SAPS and SANS at entry and after 1 and 2 years. The IT consisted of assertive community treatment, multifamily groups, psycho-education and social skills training, and the caseload was 1:10 compared with 1:25 in ST. Since attrition was considerable, a mixed model analysis with repeated measurements was used to examine the possible effects of IT statistically.
IT reduced both negative and positive symptoms significantly better than ST. Most marked were the results from the negative dimension, where all five global scores from SANS had a significantly better reduction in IT. Sub-analyses did not single out any one element in the integrated treatment that could explain this result.
Integrated treatment significantly reduced both negative and psychotic symptoms, assumably due to the different psychosocial treatment elements that were provided in the IT. The results indicate that the integrated approach is crucial, since, most likely, many aspects of the integrated treatment have contributed to the reduction of symptoms.