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J Nerv Ment Dis. 2010 Apr;198(4):299-304. doi: 10.1097/NMD.0b013e3181d619cf.

A randomized controlled trial of a Dutch version of systems training for emotional predictability and problem solving for borderline personality disorder.

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Lentis, Groningen, The Netherlands.


Systems Training for Emotional Predictability and Problem Solving (STEPPS) is a group treatment for persons with borderline personality disorder (BPD) that is relatively easy to implement. We investigated the efficacy of a Dutch version of this treatment (VERS). Seventy-nine DSM-IV BPD patients were randomly assigned to STEPPS plus an adjunctive individual therapy, or to treatment as usual. Assessments took place before and after the intervention, and at a 6-month follow-up. STEPPS recipients showed a significantly greater reduction in general psychiatric and BPD-specific symptomatology than subjects assigned to treatment as usual; these differences remained significant at follow-up. STEPPS also led to greater improvement in quality of life, especially at follow-up. No differences in impulsive or parasuicidal behavior were observed. Effect sizes for the differences between the treatments were moderate to large. The results suggest that the brief STEPPS program combined with limited individual therapy can improve BPD-treatment in a number of ways.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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