Experiential avoidance as a functional dimension of a transdiagnostic approach to psychopathology

Stanisław Malicki , Paweł Ostaszewski


The aim of the article is to examine the hypothesis that cognitive and behavioural processes that maintain various mental disorders are common across these disorders. The practical implication of such an approach to psychopathology will be illuminated in the context of acceptance and commitment therapy. Background: Mental disorders are traditionally perceived and classified as separate diagnostic categories, analogous to somatic disorders. In the field of psychiatry categorical approach faces serious challenges, such as frequent comorbidity. A growing body of empirical evidence supports the hypothesis that common processes may maintain various mental disorders. Studies have shown a strong correlation of experiential avoidance with several measures of psychopathology. These findings single out experiential avoidance as an important transdiagnostic process present in numerous mental health problems. Conclusions: Grouping symptoms into diagnostic categories may be a useful approach as long as separate units are results of separate pathological processes. An alternative way of diagnostic assessment consists in identifying and measuring processes that lead to psychopathology, regardless of how they manifest at the level of symptoms. The authors of the article propose to unite both approaches into one diagnostic system which could provide clinicians with both possibilities to categorize symptoms and to measure transdiagnostic processes. Such a system would facilitate the choice of therapeutic strategies, especially within the area of psychosocial interventions. In this context, experiential avoidance seems to emerge as a promising candidate for the basic functional dimension of psychopathology.
Author Stanisław Malicki
Stanisław Malicki,,
, Paweł Ostaszewski (Wydział Psychologii)
Paweł Ostaszewski,,
- Wydział Psychologii
Journal seriesPostępy Psychiatrii i Neurologii, ISSN 1230-2813, (B 13 pkt)
Issue year2014
Publication size in sheets0.5
Keywords in Polishdiagnoza, psychoterapia, terapia akceptacji i zaangażowania, unikanie doświadczania, teoria ram relacyjnych
Keywords in EnglishDiagnosis, Psychotherapy, Acceptance and commitment therapy, Experiential avoidance, Relational frame theory
ASJC Classification2738 Psychiatry and Mental health; 2728 Clinical Neurology; 2808 Neurology; 3203 Clinical Psychology
URL http://www.sciencedirect.com/science/article/pii/S1230281314000117
Languageen angielski
Malicki-Ostaszewski-2014-PPiN-tytulowa.pdf of 14-09-2015
154.28 KB
Score (nominal)13
Publication indicators Scopus SNIP (Source Normalised Impact per Paper): 2014 = 0.047
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Dorobek Naukowy - Preview URLhttp://dn.swps.edu.pl/Podglad.aspx?WpisID=15356
Dorobek Naukowy - Approve URLhttp://dn.swps.edu.pl/Biuro/ZatwierdzanieWpisu.aspx?WpisID=15356
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* presented citation count is obtained through Internet information analysis and it is close to the number calculated by the Publish or Perish system.
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