Short term versus long term psychotherapy in opioid dependence: A pilot study

A. Lerner, M. Sigal, A. Bacalu, M. Gelkopf

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


A multicenter prospective open study was performed in order to compare the effectiveness of 2 modalities of individual dynamic psychotherapy in a group of recently detoxified opioid dependent patients. Thirty four patients were assigned to receive either short-term dynamic psychotherapy (ST) or long-term dynamic psychotherapy (LT); both modalities were offered along with drug counselling. At the end of the treatment, the short term therapy group was followed up for 2 years, while the long term therapy group continued the follow up for one year, due to the different time span of the treatment approaches. Dropout rates for ST (47%) and LT (53%) patients were similar, and the re-entry rate for the ST group was superior (62.5% vs. 28.5%). Short term interventions appear to be at least as effective as long term interventions, and have the advantage of a high rate of program re-entry. Further studies conducted on larger samples are needed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)114-119
Number of pages6
JournalIsrael Journal of Psychiatry and Related Sciences
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1992
Externally publishedYes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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