Effectiveness of inpatient dialectical behavioral therapy for borderline personality disorder: a controlled trial

Martin Bohus, Brigitte Haaf, Timothy Simms, Matthias F Limberger, Christian Schmahl, Christine Unckel, Klaus Lieb, Marsha M Linehan
Behaviour Research and Therapy 2004, 42 (5): 487-99
Dialectical Behavioral Therapy (DBT) was initially developed and evaluated as an outpatient treatment program for chronically suicidal individuals meeting criteria for borderline personality disorder (BPD). Within the last few years, several adaptations to specific settings have been developed. This study aims to evaluate a three-month DBT inpatient treatment program. Clinical outcomes, including changes on measures of psychopathology and frequency of self-mutilating acts, were assessed for 50 female patients meeting criteria for BPD. Thirty-one patients had participated in a DBT inpatient program, and 19 patients had been placed on a waiting list and received treatment as usual in the community. Post-testing was conducted four months after the initial assessment (i.e. four weeks after discharge for the DBT group). Pre-post-comparison showed significant changes for the DBT group on 10 of 11 psychopathological variables and significant reductions in self-injurious behavior. The waiting list group did not show any significant changes at the four-months point. The DBT group improved significantly more than participants on the waiting list on seven of the nine variables analyzed, including depression, anxiety, interpersonal functioning, social adjustment, global psychopathology and self-mutilation. Analyses based on Jacobson's criteria for clinically relevant change indicated that 42% of those receiving DBT had clinically recovered on a general measure of psychopathology. The data suggest that three months of inpatient DBT treatment is significantly superior to non-specific outpatient treatment. Within a relatively short time frame, improvement was found across a broad range of psychopathological features. Stability of the recovery after one month following discharge, however, was not evaluated and requires further study.

Full Text Links

Find Full Text Links for this Article


You are not logged in. Sign Up or Log In to join the discussion.

Related Papers

Remove bar
Read by QxMD icon Read

Save your favorite articles in one place with a free QxMD account.


Search Tips

Use Boolean operators: AND/OR

diabetic AND foot
diabetes OR diabetic

Exclude a word using the 'minus' sign

Virchow -triad

Use Parentheses

water AND (cup OR glass)

Add an asterisk (*) at end of a word to include word stems

Neuro* will search for Neurology, Neuroscientist, Neurological, and so on

Use quotes to search for an exact phrase

"primary prevention of cancer"
(heart or cardiac or cardio*) AND arrest -"American Heart Association"