Schizophrenia: A study comparing a family therapy group following a paradoxical model plus psychodrugs and a group treated by the conventional clinical approach
Aprile 1997

• Apr 1997
• Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica
• P De Giacomo
• G Pierri
• A. Santoni Rugiu
• M. Buonsante
• L. Zavoianni

A ‘short family therapy’ in schizophrenia, according to a specific systemic model (the ‘Elementary Pragmatic Model’ or EPM) with a strong paradoxical structure is presented. A total of 38 schizophrenic patients, randomly allocated, were treated according to the EPM model combined with psychotropic drugs (19 cases, each of whom underwent 10 weekly sessions of family therapy) or a traditional clinical-pharmacological approach (19 cases). With regard to all measures (number of drop-outs, symptoms according to the Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale, social activity according to the Strauss-Carpenter Outcome Scale and an interactive test) the EPM group showed better results. It is suggested that the systemic approach could be used not only as an effective therapy model in schizophrenia but also as an intervention in addition to or integrated into an ongoing psychoeducational family therapy.

The interventions comprised a mixture of single family work (n = 9), group family work (n = 3) or a mixture of both (n = 2). Some interventions were delivered to carers only (Cozolino et al., 1988;McCann et al., 2013;Calvo et al., 2014;Chien et al., 2016a,b), whilst others invited service users to join all or part of the intervention (Goldstein et al., 1978;Rund et al., 1994;Zhang et al., 1994;Linszen et al., 1996;De Giacomo et al., 1997;Rossberg et al., 2010;Miklowitz et al., 2014;O’Brien et al., 2014).Three studies did not mention whether service users attended the sessions or not (Leavey et al., 2004;Gleeson et al., 2010;Browning et al., 2013). The content of the interventions differed across trials; seven studies were based on published manualized interventions (i.e.,Falloon, 1984;Glick et al., 1993;McFarlane et al., 1995;Kuipers et al., 2002;McCann et al., 2013), whilst the remaining referenced study-specific protocols.

A case of late onset anorexia treated with a short-term interactive therapy
January 1993
• M. Buonsante
• Piero De Giacomo
• F.P. Fornaro

A case of late onset anorexia is discussed. The case was treated with a short-term interactive therapy. The first two interventions resulted into a marked improvement and weight gain was over 10 Kg.; the intervention occurred outside the usual family therapy setting, and traditional medical examination were used instead. The third session during which the patient was checked and the line of therapy was continued was attended by another therapist using the classical approach for one hour; consequently, overall treatment time was two hours. The Elementary Pragmatic Model was used as the basic theoretical reference for the interventions.

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