Oct 26, 2008

Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy: An evidence based and effective treatment

Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy is an effective and evidence-based treatment for trauma and attachment disorders. There have been a few empirical follow-up studies published in professional peer-reviewed publications following a group of families that received DDP and a group who received other forms of treatment. These studies demonstrated that the children treated with DDP had clinically and statistically significant reductions in various scales of the Child Behavior Checklist (Achenbach) while those who received other treatments (play therapy, residential treatment, group therapy, family therapy, etc) from other providers showed no changes and, after four years, actually showed clinically and statistically significant deteriorations in their behavior.

Craven & Lee (2006) determined that DDP is a supported and acceptable treatment (category 3 in a sixlevel system). However, their review only included results from a partial preliminary presentation of an ongoing follow-up study, which was subsequently completed and published in 2006. This initial study compared the results DDP with other forms of treatment, ‘usual care’, 1 year after treatment ended. A second study extended these results out to 4 years after treatment ended. Based on the Craven & Lee classifications (Saunders et al. 2004), inclusion of
those studies would have resulted in DDP being classified as an evidence-based category 2, ‘Supported and probably efficacious’. Other than lacking two randomized controlled studies, DDP would have be classified as a category 1, "Well supported efficacious treatment," the highest level.

The interested reader may want to look at the following references for further details:

Becker-Weidman, A., (2006)“Treatment for Children with Trauma-Attachment Disorders: Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy,” Child and Adolescent Social Work Journal. Vol. 23 #2, April 2006, pp 147-171.

Becker-Weidman, A., (2007) “Treatment For Children with Reactive Attachment Disorder: Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy,” http://www.center4familydevelop.com/research.pdf

Becker-Weidman, A., & Hughes, D., (2008) “Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy: An evidence-based treatment for children with complex trauma and disorders of attachment,” Child & Adolescent Social Work, 13, pp.329-337.

Becker-Weidman, A., & Shell, D., (Eds.), (2008) Creating Capacity for Attachment: Dyadic Developmental Psychotherapy in the Treatment of Trauma-Attachment Disorders. Arthur Becker-Weidman, Ph.D., & Debra Shell, (Eds.) Woods N Barnes publishing, Oklahoma City, OK, & Center for Family Development, Williamsville, NY, Second Printing: 2008.

Craven, P. & Lee, R. (2006) Therapeutic interventions for foster children: a systematic research synthesis. Research on Social Work Practice, 16, 287–304.

Saunders, B., Berliner, L. & Hanson, R. (2004) Child physical and sexual abuse: guidelines for treatment. Available at: http://academicdepartments.musc.edu/ncvc/resources_prof/

Oct 21, 2008


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