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In Depth: A Collaborative Teaching Exercise in the Intensive Psychotherapy of Schizophrenia (Garfield)

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Length: 30 minutes

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Ira Steinman, MD (Chair), David Garfield, MD & Brian Koehler, (Discussant)

*This is David Garfield's part of the presentation.*

The intensive psychotherapy of schizophrenia and delusional disorders is hardly practiced and rarely taught. Yet we both believe, and have found through our clinical experience, that such a therapeutic approach may succeed in severely disturbed schizophrenic patients when all else has failed.  To demonstrate the utility of an intensive psychotherapy in such a patient population, a severely ill schizophrenic will be presented, one who had been previously heavily medicated with antipsychotics and given ECT,  while in and out of the psychiatric hospital and in day care and five times/ week individual and group supportive psychotherapy for seven years. The patient, diagnosed as schizophrenic on several psychological testings and in a number of psychiatric hospitals, has been free of psychotic thought, hallucinations, delusions and behavior for more than thirty years since engaging with one of us (Steinman) in an Intensive psychotherapy. She has been off all antipsychotic medication and a functioning member of society, working and with a number of close relationships for three decades.

Though this happy conclusion may seem magical, it is the result of an intensive psychotherapy, as made amply clear by David Garfield's analytic commentary and historical perspective on this highly successful and curative psychotherapy. This case is one of three extensive cases we are currently collaborating on, with Steinman doing the psychotherapy and Garfield doing the analytic commentary and exegesis. Our forthcoming book will have the same title as this presentation.


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ISPS-US