Why we recommend analytic treatment for some patients and not for others

Eve Caligor, Barry L. Stern, Margaret Hamilton, Verna MacCornack, Lionel Wininger, Joel Sneed, Steven P. Roose

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

25 Scopus citations


One hundred consecutive patients applying for analysis completed a comprehensive battery of structured interviews and self-report questionnaires assessing dimensions of psychopathology and psychological functions that analysts consider important when evaluating patients for analysis. Patients were evaluated for analysis by a candidate supervised by a training analyst. Fifty patients were accepted for analysis and fifty rejected. In both groups, psychiatric morbidity and psychosocial impairment were high, with a 50% current and 74% lifetime diagnosis of mood disorder, 56% current and 61% lifetime history of anxiety disorder. The mean Beck Depression Inventory score fell in the moderate range, 19.1 (SD = 11.0), mean Hamilton Depression score in the mild range, 14.1 (SD = 7.8), and the mean Hamilton Anxiety score in the moderate range, 14.6 (SD = 8.1), with 57% meeting criteria for an Axis II diagnosis, and mean social adjustment in the moderate to high pathology range. Patients accepted and rejected for analysis did not differ with regard to any of these dimensions. Accepted patients scored lower on measures of impulsivity, aggression, and sociopathy, and on scores of personality rigidity, primitive defenses, and outward aggression. The major finding was the striking similarity between patients accepted and rejected for psychoanalytic treatment.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)677-694
Number of pages18
JournalJournal of the American Psychoanalytic Association
Issue number3
StatePublished - Jun 2009

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Arts and Humanities (miscellaneous)
  • Clinical Psychology


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