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From The CriticsReviewer: Richard A. Carroll, PhD (Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine)
Description: This book is part of the Guilford Substance Abuse Series. It consists primarily of a manual for clinicians and outlines a highly structured cognitive-behavioral approach to the treatment of alcoholism using a couples treatment modality.
Purpose: The book arose out of a federally funded program of research that focused on attempting to validate the efficacy of several different approaches to the treatment of alcoholism. The authors of this book developed this manual in the course of that research. The approach was then tested in a large scale treatment outcome study. The book presents in concrete detail a 20-session treatment plan that focuses primarily on techniques of self-monitoring, communication skills, coping skills, and relapse prevention.
Audience: The book was written primarily for clinicians who wish to expand their skills in work with alcoholics and their partners. Because it is a concrete treatment manual, its lessons can be learned by both beginning and advanced clinicians. The authors are very well qualified to present such a manual given their years of clinical and research experience with this topic.
Features: The book is organized into several sections that cover the acute, relapse prevention, and termination phases of the treatment model. Throughout the book are clearly identified outlines of treatment goals and techniques. The book also contains many valuable forms, which are integral to the treatment.
Assessment: This worthwhile book is part of an important development within the realm of clinical psychology, which is to develop and disseminate empirically validated treatments for a range of mental health problems. It will also be useful to clinicians who work with alcoholics, due to the numerous behavioral and cognitive strategies that are presented. It would be especially useful to novice clinicians, who will find the structured and detailed approach to treatment to be a solid foundation to work with alcoholics.