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Group Therapy and Maintenance Treatment of Schizophrenics

James L. Claghorn, MD; Edwin E. Johnstone, MD; Thomas H. Cook, PhD; Lorri Itschner, RN
Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1974;31(3):361-365. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1974.01760150069010.
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Group psychotherapy and antipsychotic medications were employed in the treatment of 49 outpatient schizophrenics. Two treatment regimens, using thiothixene and chlorpromazine hydrochloride, were divided into group therapy and nongroup therapy subgroups for a duration of six months.

Patients' symptoms were evaluated on a monthly basis through use of a physician's global assessment, and the Brief Psychiatric Rating Scale. Subtle changes in subjects' interpersonal emotional adjustment (a possible positive effect of psychotherapy) were measured before and after treatment by means of the Interpersonal Test Battery.

Results indicated no substantial difference between medications, but a positive change over this time period for both drug regimens. While group therapy did not alter patients' symptomatology, it did, according to projective test results, deepen the subjects' awareness and insight into their own behavior.

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