Psychoanalysis.  2016 Jul;27(3):81-91. 10.18529/psychoanal.2016.27.3.81.

Can the Effectiveness of the Psychoanalytic Therapies Truly Be Proven?: The Effectiveness of the Psychoanalysis and Psychoanalytic Psychotherapy

  • 1Department of Psychiatry, College of Medicine, Yeungnam University, Daegu, Korea.


The nature of psychoanalysis and long-term psychoanalytic psychotherapy makes it difficult to perform efficacy study including randomized controlled trial (RCT). Several RCTs are focused on the effectiveness of psychoanalytic psychotherapy; and more RCTs are conducted across multiple disorders for short-term psychoanalytic psychotherapy. As a result, there were more studies on psychoanalytic psychotherapy, as compared with that of cognitive behavioral therapy or pharmacotherapy. Moreover, psychoanalytic psychotherapy yielded significant benefits in terms of psychiatric symptoms but also the aspects of quality of life, adaptive capacities, and the reduction of maladaptive interpersonal behaviors. The psychotherapies of various types applying psychoanalytic theories were generally effective. Consequently, it can be inferred that long-term and intensive psychoanalysis is also effective.


Psychoanalysis; Psychoanalytic psychotherapy; Psychodynamic psychotherapy; Effectiveness
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