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December 1959

Psychoanalytic Formulations of Effects of Reserpine on Schizophrenic Organization

AMA Arch Gen Psychiatry. 1959;1(6):662-670. doi:10.1001/archpsyc.1959.03590060124015

On previous occasions the point was made that in psychopharmacological studies it is necessary to go beyond the gross clinical effects of a given drug and to determine the alteration in psychic structure concomitant with the drug administered.1,2 Only through the determination of such changes would it be possible in the future to influence, more or less directly, the psychoanalytic or psychotherapeutic situations. These studies would necessarily involve intensive psychodynamic explorations of a very small number of patients and would lead to inferences not from statistical analysis but from longitudinal comprehension of each individual patient.

Such studies were previously reported in connection with the influence of Rauwolfia derivatives on dream formation and on schizophrenic dynamic structure.1-4 The evidence from the latter study gave the impression that under Rauwolfia administration a partial shift from schizophrenic organization (or position) to manic-depressive organization