The effectiveness of Emotion-Focused Therapy: A systematic review of experimental studies
Keywords:Emotion Focused Therapy, psychotherapy, systematic review, efficacy, effectiveness
Objective. The methodology of a systematic review of studies verifying the efficacy of the intervention in the treatment of mental disorders helps to reduce bias by using explicit and rigorous methods for literature search and critical evaluation of previous studies. Up to now, no systematic review has been conducted on the efficacy of individual emotion focused therapy (EFT), despite the growing number of research findings examining the efficacy of EFT. The aim of this systematic review is therefore to evaluate the efficacy of an individual form of EFT in the treatment of mental problems and disorders.
Method. In this study, the authors followed the PRISMA methodological manual. A systematic literature search was performed in the EBSCO, PubMed, and Web of Science databases. The analysis was focused on assessing the magnitude of the effect of pre-post therapeutic changes, the sustainability of change within follow-up, or comparing the effect of change with another psychotherapeutic approach by evaluating the statistical and material significance of changes (effect size).
Results. The authors identified seven studies that used a (quasi) experimental method to investigate the efficacy of EFT. The results support the efficacy of EFT as well as the sustainability of change in the treatment of depression. There is preliminary support for the efficacy of EFT in the treatment of social anxiety, trauma, and eating disorders. So far, in the case of the above-mentioned disorders and difficulties, it is possible to consider EFT as probably effective.
Limitations. Only studies written in English were selected in this systematic review. Case studies were not included.
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Copyright (c) 2021 Martin Fülep, Ľubor Pilárik, Lukáš Novák, Petr Mikoška
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