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Time for a paradigm shift for psychotherapies?
  1. Elisabeth Schramm1,
  2. Ron Rapee2,
  3. Toshi A Furukawa3
  1. 1Department of Psychiatry and Psychotherapy, Medical Center, University of Freiburg, Faculty of Medicine, Freiburg, Germany
  2. 2Department of Psychology, Center for Emotional Health, Macquarie University, Sydney, New South Wales, Australia
  3. 3Department of Health Promotion and Human Behavior, Kyoto University Graduate School of Medicine / School of Public Health, Kyoto, Japan
  1. Correspondence to Professor Toshi A Furukawa, Kyoto University Graduate School of Medicine Faculty of Medicine, Kyoto 6068501, Japan; furukawa{at}kuhp.kyoto-u.ac.jp

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Almost 70 years ago, Eysenck1 stirred up the community of psychotherapists by postulating that psychotherapies—at that time predominantly psychoanalytic—are not effective in the treatment of psychological disorders. This led to a massive surge of empirically evaluated psychotherapy research and promoted particularly the rise of cognitive behavioural therapy. Today, we know that a range of psychotherapies work across a wide variety of mental disorders and numerous meta-analyses of randomised controlled trials prove that Eysenck’s conclusion is no longer relevant. However, despite ample evidence that psychotherapy is generally efficacious, only 30% of patients achieve remission while as many as 65% leave treatment without a measurable benefit or even with deterioration.2 Therefore, psychotherapy researchers face the challenge to improve the effectiveness of their interventions. …

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Footnotes

  • Twitter @Toshi_FRKW

  • Contributors ES drafted the editorial, and TAF and RR revised it. All authors approved the final version of the manuscript.

  • Funding The authors have not declared a specific grant for this research from any funding agency in the public, commercial or not-for-profit sectors.

  • Competing interests TAF reports grants and personal fees from Mitsubishi-Tanabe, personal fees from MSD, personal fees from Shionogi, outside the submitted work; In addition, TAF has a patent 2018-177688 concerning smartphone CBT apps pending, and intellectual properties for Kokoro-app licensed to Tanabe-Mitsubishi.

  • Patient consent for publication Not required.

  • Provenance and peer review Not commissioned; internally peer reviewed.

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