Despite the use of art therapy in various psychiatric structures and articles supporting its application, in recent years very few data grounded on primary research have been published. Given the complexity of psychiatric disorders the number of people who suffer from them, and the fact that the primary treatment in psychiatric disorders remains pharmacotherapy, questions about the effectiveness of art therapy (as a complimentary treatment) remain open. The purpose of this study was to investigate the efficacy of art therapy in psychosocial rehabilitation of people with psychiatric disorders. A search of the literature and electronic databases using indexing words was conducted. The criteria for inclusion of articles were: a. studies had to be “outcome-intervention” studies, b. studies should concern only intervention in adults, and c. studies had to include patients with diagnoses according to the DSM of the American Psychiatric Association. Finally, only five articles were included in this systematic review. There is evidence for the effectiveness of art therapy in areas related to the psychosocial rehabilitation of persons suffering from psychiatric disorders, usually in combination with pharmacotherapy. The findings of the surveys reviewed are encouraging and justify the conduct of additional primary research.

Key words: Art therapy, psychiatric patients, psychosocial rehabilitation, schizophrenia, depression, post traumatic stress disorder.

P. Apotsos (page 245) - Full article (Greek)