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Systems Training for Emotional Predictability and Problem Solving (STEPPS): program efficacy and personality features as predictors of drop-out -- an Italian study.

Alesiani, Roberta; Boccalon, Silvia; Giarolli, Laura; Blum, Nancee; Fossati, Andrea.
Compr Psychiatry; 55(4): 920-7, 2014 May.
Artigo em Inglês | MEDLINE | Fev 2014 | ID: mdl-24556518
Resumo: In this study we present a clinical application of the STEPPS model in an Italian sample of severely affected patients with borderline personality disorder (BPD) or personality disorder (PD) with prominent borderline features in comorbidity with a mood disorder. The aims of this work are: 1) to confirm our preliminary results in a larger sample and at a 12-month follow-up, and 2) to identify predictors of drop-out vs completion of STEPPS in order to understand which characteristics of patients make them suitable or not for this treatment. The sample is composed of 32 subjects recruited from a population of inpatients of the Mood Disorders Center, Department of Clinical Neurosciences, Hospital San Raffaele-Turro, Milan. To confirm STEPPS efficacy at 12-month follow-up, we selected the following outcome criteria: reduction in the number of hospitalizations related to self-harm acts; reduction in the number of suicidal attempts; reduction of perceived emotional intensity levels; changes in cognitive filter scores; changes in the scores on self-report questionnaires. To identify predictors of drop-out vs completion, we analysed the following variables: demographic features (sex, marital status, school level achieved, and job status); Axis-I diagnosis; Axis-II categorical and dimensional diagnosis; and personality features. Seventeen (53%) subjects completed the treatment successfully. The drop-out rate was 47%. Patients who completed the program show a significant decrease in the number of hospitalizations, both at the end of the treatment and at 12-month follow-up. Friedman ANOVA test shows a significant decrease in suicidal attempts during and after STEPPS, and at 12-month follow-up. Analysis of drop-outs showed no significant differences with regard to sex, marital status, school level and job status between the two groups. Axis-I and Axis-II categorical diagnoses did not discriminate between the two groups. Those patients who dropped differ significantly from completers in histrionic personality traits and magical thinking index, given by the interaction between low scores in Self-Directedness and high scores in Self-Transcendence.