Volume 21, Issue 1

Descriptive Study of Psychotherapeutic Treatment Results in Natural Context in Buenos Aires, Argentina

Since the 50's there were great efforts to demonstrate the efficacy of psychotherapy. Although there were positive results, the external validity of controlled trials was questioned. This situation led to the need to test the clinical effectiveness in naturalistic conditions. The wide range of areas in which psychotherapy is practiced poses the need to extend outcome studies in order to include poorly tested treatment contexts. The purpose of this study was to report local results in naturalistic treatment conditions and compare them with those reported in Hansen, Lambert, and Forman (2002) drawn from multiple clinical trials in the U.S. The sample consisted of 274 local psychotherapy patients treated at a psychotherapy center in Buenos Aires City. A non-experimental design was conducted with measurements of symptom severity prior to each therapy session. Statistically significant reductions were found in pre and post treatment with moderate to strong effect sizes. The proportion of patients who reported some type of improvement was higher than the one reported in the US study. A large percentage of premature terminations of treatment was found in both studies. The clinical implications of these findings are to be discussed.

Efficacy, Effectiveness, Psychotherapy in Argentina, Early Termination, Outcome contrast

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