Psychodynamic Psychotherapy: A clinical manual / Edition 1

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Psychodynamic psychotherapy offers people a chance to create new ways of thinking and behaving in order to improve the quality of their lives. This book offers a practical, step-by-step guide to the technique of psychodynamic psychotherapy, with instruction on listening, reflecting, and intervening. It will systematically take the reader from evaluation to termination using straightforward language and carefully annotated examples. Written by experienced educators and based on a tried and tested syllabus, this book provides clinically relevant and accessible aspects of theories of treatment processes. The workbook style exercises in this book allow readers to practice what they learn in each section and more "actively" learn as they read the book. This book will teach you:
• About psychodynamic psychotherapy and some of the ways it is hypothesized to work
• How to evaluate patients for psychodynamic psychotherapy, including assessment of ego function and defenses
• The essentials for beginning the treatment, including fostering the therapeutic alliance, setting the frame, and setting goals
• A systematic way for listening to patients, reflecting on what you've heard, and making choices about how and what to say
• How to apply the Listen/Reflect/Intervene method to the essential elements of psychodynamic technique
• How these techniques are used to address problems with self esteem, relationships with others, characteristic ways of adapting, and other ego functions
• Ways in which technique shifts over time This book presents complex concepts in a clear way that will be approachable for all readers. It is an invaluable guide for psychiatry residents, psychology students, and social work students, but also offers practicing clinicians in these areas a new way to think about psychodynamic psychotherapy. The practical approach and guided exercises make this an exceptional tool for psychotherapy educators teaching all levels of learners.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"This helpful book should serve as a primer for all psychiatric residents, as it provides a wonderful launching point for further reading into psychodynamically oriented therapies." (The Residents' Journal, a publication of The American Journal of Psychiatry, 2012)

"The second part of the book focuses on patient evaluation and assessment for psychodynamic psychotherapy. The highlight of this section is chapter 4, on the assessment of ego function. It is superb. In fewer than twenty pages, the authors explain ego strength, describe eleven basic ego functions (adapted from the work of Bellack and Goldsmith), define and give clear examples of each ego defense, and briefly discuss superego function. This chapter contains the clearest and most concise discussion of ego function (defenses) I have ever read." (Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association, July 2012)

"Although the clear prose, well-organized format, and rich insights make this book a pleasure to read, it is the abundance of carefully annotated case examples on almost every page that differentiates this book from others like it. At a time when many psychiatry resident programs do not provide adequate training in psychodynamic psychotherapy, this book provides a much-needed corrective. Although it is meant as a book for initial learning, this is the kind of book that will remain on the reader's desk as a frequently thumbed companion and reference." (The Journal of Nervous and Mental Disease, May 2012)

"This splendid book by Deborah Cabaniss and her colleagues vividly and eloquently describes and explains expert psychotherapeutic technique, as well as demonstrating exemplary teaching skills......The authors are unusually gifted in constructing brief clinical exchanges that are informative, self-contained, and convincingly true to life. They have mastered the art of narrative—in their book in general, and especially in the vignettes... The quality of their writing is so superb that I will quote from it liberally. I believe many trainees will be inspired by the book to pursue further training in psychotherapy and psychoanalysis." (The Psychoanalytic Quarterly, 2012)

"Throughout the book, one sees evidence that the authors “have been there, seen that, and done the right thing about it.” They have distilled their long experience into clear and readable prose; resorting minimally to jargon; they speak directly to the likely concerns of students. I recommend the book for its intended audience and for anyone interested in the art and science of psychodynamic psychotherapy."  (Psychoanalytic Psychology, December 2011)

"This book is appropriate for any behavioral health professional interested in learning psychodynamic psychotherapy, including psychiatrists, psychologists, and students of these disciplines. The authors are well entrenched in the East Coast psychodynamic culture and tradition." (Doody's, September 2011)

Doody's Review Service
Reviewer: Christopher J Graver, PhD, ABPP-CN(Madigan Healthcare System)
Description: Despite a flood of behavioral and cognitive psychological interventions with strong empirical support for a number of different disorders, psychodynamic psychotherapy survives, as indicated by the release of this instructional book.
Purpose: It was developed as an instructional aide to psychiatry residents and is intended to teach the nuts and bolts of psychodynamic psychotherapy.
Audience: This book is appropriate for any behavioral health professional interested in learning psychodynamic psychotherapy, including psychiatrists, psychologists, and students of these disciplines. The authors are well entrenched in the East Coast psychodynamic culture and tradition.
Features: Interestingly, the introduction describes a very generic therapeutic approach that includes some aspects that could be considered part of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT), and the authors disavow any particular school of psychodynamic thought. Nevertheless, ego-strength, super ego-strength, and defense mechanisms make their return in early chapters. The indications for using psychodynamic psychotherapy are explored in chapter 6. Despite a narrow focus of two main conditions that would indicate the use of this approach, these two conditions are expanded to encompass most any problem, some of which are quite arguably better suited to other intervention techniques (e.g., psychotic individuals). The main contraindication seems to be a patient who is unmotivated to commit significant time and resources to therapy. As the book progresses, the chapters become focused on the details of therapy through case examples, as well as follow-up activities at the end of each chapter that are helpful for learning the process. It also covers a host of general clinical skills, including reflection, therapeutic alliance, empathic listening, setting boundaries, etc. The middle chapters set up how to conduct psychotherapy sessions in the initial phases, but the book fails to provide detailed information about therapy over the long term and leaves the process vague and open-ended until one of the final chapters discusses specific ideas for termination. Although the book is certainly instructive, it often fails to provide any rationale for the direction given other than someone said so in a book. Many of the references to support the authors' instruction come from other books on psychodynamic topics and not from peer-reviewed journal articles or scientific studies (e.g., outcome studies, dismantling investigations).
Assessment: As an instructive guide, this book provides some introductory information about this therapeutic approach in a useful manner, but the details of the middle stage of therapy are generally lacking. Additionally, readers must take what the authors say largely on faith or consensus, without hard scientific or peer-reviewed information. For readers willing to do that, this can be a reasonable resource.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780470684719
  • Publisher: Wiley
  • Publication date: 2/22/2011
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 394
  • Sales rank: 423,695
  • Product dimensions: 6.80 (w) x 9.80 (h) x 1.00 (d)

Meet the Author

Deborah L. Cabaniss, M.D. is Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons and Director of Psychotherapy Training in the Department of Psychiatry at Columbia University School of Medicine. She has won several teaching awards, including the Edith Sabshin award from the American Psychoanalytic Association. Dr Cabaniss has published numerous articles related to psychoanalytic and psychiatric education and has just finished a term on the editorial board of the Journal of the American Psychoanalytic Association.

Carolyn J. Douglas, M.D. is Associate Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, and Adjunct Associate Professor of Clinical Psychiatry at Weill Medical College of Cornell University. She served for many years as Director of the Residency Training Inpatient Unit at Columbia University Medical Center, and was co-Director of the Columbia Neuropsychiatric Service.   Dr. Douglas is the author of publications on teaching supportive psychotherapy to psychiatric Residents, the psychotherapy selection process, and psychodynamic psychotherapy.

Anna R. Schwartz, M.D. is Assistant Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. She is also Director of the Psychodynamic Psychotherapy Program at the Columbia University Center for Psychoanalytic Training and Research. She has taught and supervised psychiatry Residents, and psychoanalytic candidates at Columbia for many years, and received the Irma Bland Teaching Award from the American Psychiatric Association.

Sabrina Cherry, M.D. is Associate Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons and practices psychiatry and psychoanalysis in New York City. She has been an active teacher and supervisor of both interpersonal and psychodynamic psychotherapy in the Columbia Residency program for twenty years.  She is now a Training and Supervising Analyst and an active teacher of psychoanalytic candidates at Columbia Center for Psychoanalytic Training and Research. Dr. Cherry is the recipient of awards from the American Psychiatric Association and from Columbia for her contributions to education and research.

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Table of Contents



PART ONE What Is Psychodynamic Psychotherapy?

1 The Treatment for a Mind in Motion.

2 How Does Psychodynamic Psychotherapy Work?

PART TWO The Evaluation.

3 Creating a Safe Place and Beginning the Evaluation.

4 Assessment of Ego Function.

5 Formulation: The Problem —> Person —> Goals —> Resources Model.

6 Indications for Psychodynamic Psychotherapy.

PART THREE Beginning the Treatment.

7 Informed Consent and Setting Goals.

8 Setting the Frame and Establishing Boundaries.

9 Developing a Therapeutic Alliance.

10 Therapeutic Neutrality.

11 Conducting a Psychotherapy Session: Decisions about Length and Frequency.

12 Our Patients' Feelings about Us and Our Feelings about Our Patients.

13 Empathic Listening.

14 Looking for Meaning.

15 Medication and Therapy.

PART FOUR Listen/Reflect/Intervene.

16 Learning to Listen.

17 Learning to Reflect.

18 Learning to Intervene.

PART FIVE Conducting a Psychodynamic Psychotherapy: Technique.

19 Affect.

20 Free Association and Resistance.

21 Transference.

22 Countertransference.

23 Unconscious Conflict and Defense.

24 Dreams.

Review activity for Part Five – understanding a moment in therapy.

PART SIX Meeting Therapeutic Goals.

25 Improving Self-Perceptions and the Ability to Regulate Self-Esteem.

26 Improving Relationships with Others.

27 Improving Characteristic Ways of Adapting.

28 Improving Other Ego Functions.

PART SEVEN Working Through and Ending.

29 Working Through.

30 Termination.

31 Continuing to Learn.

Recommended Reading.


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