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Neglect of the complex: why psychotherapy for post-traumatic clinical presentations is often ineffective

  • Frank M. Corrigan (a1) and Alastair M. Hull (a2)
Summary

Evidence of efficacy in studies of post-traumatic conditions is largely derived from studies in which variables are kept to a minimum. Extrapolation of treatments from uncomplicated disorders to complex conditions may therefore be called evidence-based without being evidenced. Complex conditions with poly-symptomatic presentations and extensive comorbidity are being denied proper evaluation, and patients most severely traumatised from the early stages of their development are not provided with rigorously evaluated psychotherapies because they are more difficult to study in the manner approved by research protocols. Such evidence as there is suggests that the simple extension of treatments for uncomplicated disorders is seriously inadequate. This has significant implications for health services responsible for the provision of the most efficacious treatments to those whose disorders arise from severe trauma, often very early in their life.

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Copyright
This is an open-access article published by the Royal College of Psychiatrists and distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Corresponding author
Correspondence to Frank M. Corrigan (frank.corigan@nhs.net)
Footnotes
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See Bulletin comment, p. 100, this issue.

Declaration of interest

None.

Footnotes
References
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BJPsych Bulletin
  • ISSN: 2056-4694
  • EISSN: 2056-4708
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Neglect of the complex: why psychotherapy for post-traumatic clinical presentations is often ineffective

  • Frank M. Corrigan (a1) and Alastair M. Hull (a2)
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