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J Pers Disord. 2014 Oct;28(5):637-56. doi: 10.1521/pedi_2014_28_132. Epub 2014 Apr 1.

Long-term outcome of inpatient psychotherapy for adolescents (IPA) with personality pathology.


Little is known about the effectiveness of treatment programs for adolescents with personality disorders (PDs). This descriptive study investigated long-term outcomes of inpatient psychotherapy for adolescents (IPA). In addition, predictors of long-term treatment effects were investigated. Seventy adolescents who completed their treatment were followed during and after their stay in IPA. Semistructured interviews were used to assess Axis I and Axis II disorders. Patients completed questionnaires to measure symptom severity and personality styles and functioning. Patients showed improvements (d ranging from .18 to .80). After leaving IPA, a small relapse rate was shown. Higher levels of dependency or more Cluster C PD traits significantly predicted positive long-term treatment outcome. Although IPA might be effective for a particular group of adolescents, mean long-term treatment effects were at best modest. Given the high costs of IPA, developing adjustments to IPA and their guidelines is warranted to ensure cost-effectiveness.

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