Dr. Sarah Ravin - Psychologist | Eating Disorders |Body Image Issues | Depression | Anxiety | Obsessive-Compulsive Disorders | Self-Injury
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Dr. Sarah Ravin

Welcome to my professional blog. I am a Florida Licensed Psychologist and trained scientist-practitioner. In 2008, I received my Ph.D. in clinical psychology. A major component of my professional identity is staying informed about recent developments in the field so that I may provide my clients with scientifically sound information and evidence-based treatment. There is a plethora of information on the internet about Eating Disorders, Depression, Anxiety, Psychotherapy. Unfortunately, much of this information is unsubstantiated and some of it is patently false. It is my hope that by sharing my thoughts and opinions on psychological issues, with scientific research and clinical experience sprinkled in for good measure, I can help to bridge the gap between research and treatment.

Summary of Treatment Outcomes

My blog posts from June through November 2013 have been devoted to describing my patients’ treatment outcomes. I’ve been advised that my recent posts have been too data-heavy and too detailed, but hey – that’s how I roll. I like to be thorough, meticulous, and transparent. Prospective patients and their families deserve to have access to this information. But for those who prefer brevity, I’ve summarized my treatment outcomes below. Click on the headings in bold for details.

    Outcomes for Patients with Anorexia Nervosa


Fifty-seven percent of my former patients with Anorexia Nervosa (AN) completed treatment. Of the “treatment completers,” 94% reached full remission and the remaining 6% reached physical remission. Patients required, on average, 28 sessions over the course of 17 months to complete treatment.

Forty-three percent of my former patients with AN did not complete treatment with me. Of the “treatment non-completers,” 23% were referred to other treatment settings which could better meet their needs; 15% moved to other geographic locations during treatment and thus were referred for treatment near their new homes; and the remaining 62% dropped out of treatment prematurely.

    Outcomes for Patients with Bulimia Nervosa and Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specified


Thirty-three percent of my former patients with Bulimia Nervosa (BN) and Eating Disorder Not Otherwise Specified (EDNOS) completed treatment. One-hundred percent of those who completed treatment reached full remission. On average, patients took 15 sessions over the course of 10 months to complete treatment. Amongst patients with BN, 44% made significant progress prior to discontinuing treatment prematurely. For patients with EDNOS, 17% made significant progress prior to discontinuing treatment prematurely.

    Outcomes for Patients with Mood Disorders


Twenty-nine percent of patients my former patients with primary diagnoses of mood disorders completed treatment. Of the patients who completed treatment, 83% achieved full remission and the remaining 17% made significant progress. On average, patients took approximately 23 sessions over the course of 11 months to complete treatment.

Thirty-eight percent of mood disorder patients quit treatment prematurely, 24% were referred to other treatment providers who could better meet their needs, and 9% moved to other geographic locations during their treatment and were referred for treatment near their new homes.

    Outcomes for Patients with Anxiety Disorders


All of my former patients with primary diagnoses of anxiety disorders who attended more than two sessions experienced substantial improvement in anxiety symptoms as well as significant improvement in functioning, even if they did not complete a full course of treatment. Patients with anxiety disorders attended an average of 10 sessions over the course of 6 months.

Amongst those who completed a full course of treatment, 75% achieved full remission and the remaining 25% made significant progress.

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2 Responses to Summary of Treatment Outcomes

  1. There’s really so many issues or disorders that a therapist needs to deal with. I wonder which of these disorders here are the most difficul to treat and the most number of patients. Is it people with anxiety disorders as i think everybody gets stressed most of the time.

    • Dr. Ravin says:

      Angelique,

      Anxiety disorders are the most prevalent mental health problems in America, with a lifetime prevalence of 29% (meaning that 29% of Americans will experience some type of anxiety disorder at some point in their lives). Major depression is also very common, with a lifetime prevalence of about 16%.

      Regarding your question of which disorder is the most difficult to treat – I would say that varies considerably depending on the severity of each particular patient’s disorder. In general, though, anxiety disorders are pretty easy to treat – they tend to respond very well to a brief course of Cognitive-Behavioral Therapy (CBT) – for example, about 8-12 sessions over the course of several months is usually sufficient treatment for an anxiety disorder.

      Eating disorders are notoriously difficult to treat – especially anorexia nervosa, which has a symptom of anosognosia (meaning that the patient, due to disturbances in brain function, is unable to recognize the severity of his/her condition and does not want to get better). Even so, as my statistics show, it is certainly possible for a patient with anorexia nervosa to achieve full remission, especially if he or she is treated with Family-Based Treatment (FBT) or some similar approach which prioritizes full nutrition and weight restoration and empowers the patient’s family to help him/her get well.

      You are right that everyone gets stressed out much of the time – this is an unfortunate reality of our modern world. Successful treatment of anxiety involves making lifestyle changes to minimize the amount of stress in one’s life, and learning adaptive coping skills to help you deal with the stress and anxiety that inevitably occur as part of life.

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