Academic journal article The Israel Journal of Psychiatry and Related Sciences

Group Psychotherapy of the Psychoses Concepts, Interventions and Contexts

Academic journal article The Israel Journal of Psychiatry and Related Sciences

Group Psychotherapy of the Psychoses Concepts, Interventions and Contexts

Article excerpt

Group Psychotherapy of the Psychoses Concepts, Interventions and Contexts

Victor L. Schermer and Malcolm Pines, editors

Jessica Kingsley, London and Philadelphia 1999

This recent book takes a serious look at the field of group therapy and its uses for psychotic patients. As Kanas, in an extensive review of studies of group therapy (ch. 5, p. 145), says, "therapy groups have been found to be useful as an adjunct to psychotropic medications for a variety of psychotic conditions...clinical trials to date support these groups as being safe, useful and relevant to the needs of psychotic patients."

The book first gives a background to the theory of psychosis. There is disagreement between Kanas and other therapists over using separate groups for schizophrenic and bipolar patients or having groups of mixed diagnoses. Since this book is based on a wide range of authors crossing international and theoretical boundaries, there are many views of the origins and treatment of psychosis with diverse emphases on the weight of biological, intrapersonal and interpersonal. Group psychotherapy works with interpersonal relating (ch. 3, p. 94) and sees the balance of "neither too close nor too distant" as crucial in group psychotherapy with psychotic patients. Many practitioners have found that this milieu particularly suits psychotic patients.

Skolnick (ch. 2, p. 77) writes, "the psychotherapy group that develops a culture that has faith that all experience can be food for emotional and mental growth . …

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