This work may not be copied, distributed, displayed, published, reproduced, transmitted, modified, posted, sold, licensed, or used for commercial purposes. By downloading this file, you are agreeing to the publisher’s Terms & Conditions.

Original Research

Combined Dialectical Behavior Therapy and Fluoxetine in the Treatment of Borderline Personality Disorder

Elizabeth B. Simpson, MD; Shirley Yen, PhD; Ellen Costello, PhD; Karen Rosen, MD; Ann Begin, PhD; Jacqueline Pistorello, PhD; and Teri Pearlstein, MD

Published: March 1, 2004

Article Abstract

Background: This study examines the therapeutic effect of fluoxetine, a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor, added to dialectical behavior therapy (DBT), an empirically supported psychosocial therapy, for the treatment of borderline personality disorder.

Method: This is a 12-week, randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study of patients with borderline personality disorder (identified using the Structured Clinical Interview for DSM-IV Axis II Disorders). All subjects received individual and group DBT. Of the 20 subjects that completed treatment, 9 were randomly assigned to receive up to 40 mg/day of fluoxetine and 11 were randomly assigned to the placebo condition. Subjects were evaluated at baseline and at week 10 or 11 on self-report measures of depression, anxiety, anger expression, dissociation, and global functioning. The study was conducted between January 1998 and February 2000.

Results: Time-by-group interaction effects revealed no significant group differences in scores from pretreatment to posttreatment on any measure. However, within the DBT/placebo group, there were significant pretreatment/posttreatment differences in the direction of improvement on all measures. No significant pretreatment/posttreatment differences were found within the DBT/fluoxetine condition.

Conclusion: The data suggest that adding fluoxetine to an efficacious psychosocial treatment does not provide any additional benefits. Further studies with larger sample sizes are warranted.

Volume: 65

Quick Links:

Continue Reading…

Subscribe to read the entire article


Buy this Article as a PDF