Monday, January 31, 2022

Mental Health Meta-analytic Evaluation

Making significant improvements in public health predicaments often takes decades.  And when meaningful progress is made it is often piecemeal, very expensive and a matter of “trial and error”.  

A good case in point-  this meta-analytic evaluation of recent meta-analyses of psychotherapies and pharmacotherapies for mental health disorders. 102 meta-analyses are examined, covering depressive disorders, anxiety disorders, post-traumatic stress disorder, obsessive-compulsive disorder, somatoform disorders, eating disorders, attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, substance use disorders, insomnia, schizophrenia spectrum disorders, and bipolar disorder.  The conclusion it reaches:  “After more than half a century of research, thousands of RCTs and millions of invested funds, the effect sizes of psychotherapies and pharmacotherapies for mental disorders are limited, suggesting a ceiling effect for treatment research as presently conducted. A paradigm shift in research seems to be required to achieve further progress.”