Article: article from journal or magazin.
Impact of personality on termination of short-term group psychotherapy in depressed elderly outpatients
International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry
OBJECTIVE: Termination in group psychotherapy is an essential phase of the psychotherapeutic process, yet its clinical determinants remain largely unknown, especially in elderly patients. The aim of this study was to assess how patients' personality traits influence their way of leaving a short-term psychotherapy group as well as a larger therapeutic community program. METHOD: Personality traits were assessed with the NEO Five-Factor Inventory in 24 elderly depressed outpatients. Patients' terminations from the group as well as from the community were ranked into four classes according to their appropriateness (completeness of experience and ability to deal with feelings of separation). RESULTS: Neuroticism was not related to the quality of termination. In contrast, agreeableness and openness to experience were strongly associated with successful termination. Conscientiousness and extraversion may have a differential impact depending on the type of group (group psychotherapy versus therapeutic community). CONCLUSION: Personality traits may be important clinical determinants of the quality of termination process in both group psychotherapy and therapeutic community settings for elderly depressed patients.
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