Journal article
Is countertransference a valid source of clinical information? Investigating emotional responses to audiotaped psychotherapy sessions



Publication Details
Authors:
Löffler-Stastka, H.; Sell, C.; Zimmermann, J.; Huber, D.; Klug, G.
Publication year:
2019
Journal:
Bulletin of the Menninger Clinic
Pages range:
1-23
ISSN:
0025-9284

Abstract
The study aimed to test whether countertransference reactions contain valid information about the patient. The authors examined whether a significant part of the variance in emotional, cognitive, and motivational responses to recorded therapy sessions is attributable to the patient. Six student raters listened to 605 audiotaped sessions of 81 patients with major depression treated by 19 therapists and indicated their reactions using a modified version of the Countertransference Questionnaire. The relative amount of variance in countertransference reactions due to differences between patients, ranging from 2{\%} to 16{\%}, was significant for most of the countertransference dimensions. Reactions were influenced by type of treatment and severity of depression but not by comorbid personality disorder or interpersonal problems. The relative amount of variance due to differences between raters was large, averaging at 23{\%}. The authors conclude that-albeit having a relatively low {\textquotedbl}signal-to-noise ratio{\textquotedbl} in raters without psychotherapy training-countertransference reactions contain valid clinical information.

Last updated on 2020-31-03 at 13:41