The utility of Cogntive Behavioral Therapy in the treatment of the schizophrenic patient

Borkowski, Jennifer Nickole
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Schizophrenia is a complex and pervasive brain disorder that effects millions of people in the United States. There are three tiers of symptoms associated with the disorder, they include: positive symptoms, negative symptoms and thought disorders. The most common method of treatment for this disorder involves the use of antipsychotic medications, and while these medications have been shown to be effective in treating certain positive symptoms of the disorder, they have a tendency to be less effective in treating the negative cluster of symptoms and the thought disorders that can be highly debilitating for patients. The aim of this review was to determine the level of effectiveness of psychosocial treatments for the disorder, and in particular to look in to Cognitive- Behavioral Therapy (CBT) as an adjunctive method of treatment to be used in conjunction with medication. By performing searches using the PsycInfo, ERIC, EBSCO and Medline databases, the researcher was able to draw the conclusion that while there are some complications and areas of improvement in study construction, CBT can indeed be a helpful method of treatment for many patients. Importantly, CBT tends to be a very flexible treatment that can accommodate many different combinations of symptoms at varying levels or severity and stages of the illness. A discussion of a possible model of treatment that uses CBT was also undertaken to provide readers with a practical example of how this form of treatment can be used.