Randomized trial of weekly, twice-monthly, and monthly interpersonal psychotherapy as maintenance treatment for women with recurrent depression.
ABSTRACT The authors sought to determine whether a greater frequency of interpersonal psychotherapy (IPT) sessions during maintenance treatment has a greater prophylactic effect than a previously validated once-a-month treatment.
A total of 233 women 20-60 years of age with recurrent unipolar depression were treated in an outpatient research clinic. After participants had achieved remission with weekly IPT or, if required, with weekly IPT plus antidepressant pharmacotherapy, they were randomly assigned to weekly, twice-monthly, or monthly maintenance IPT monotherapy for 2 years or until a recurrence of their depression occurred.
Among participants who remitted with IPT alone and entered maintenance treatment (N=99), 19 (26%) of the 74 who remained in the study throughout the 2-year maintenance phase experienced a recurrence of depression. Among participants who required the addition of a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor to achieve remission (N=90), 32 (36%) sustained that remission through continuation treatment and drug discontinuation and began maintenance treatment; of these, 13 (50%) of the 26 who remained in the study throughout the maintenance phase experienced a recurrence. Survival analysis of time to recurrence by randomized treatment frequency showed no effect on recurrence-free survival in either treatment subgroup.
These results suggest that maintenance IPT, even at a frequency of only one visit per month, is a good method of prophylaxis for women who can achieve remission with IPT alone. In contrast, among those who require the addition of pharmacotherapy, IPT monotherapy represents a significantly less efficacious approach to maintenance treatment.
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ABSTRACT: Although electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is the most effective acute antidepressant intervention, sustained response rates are low. It has never been systematically assessed whether psychotherapy, continuation ECT, or antidepressant medication is the most efficacious intervention to maintain initial treatment response. In a prospective, randomized clinical trial, 90 inpatients with major depressive disorder (MDD) were treated with right unilateral ultra-brief acute ECT. Electroconvulsive therapy responders received 6 months guideline-based antidepressant medication (MED) and were randomly assigned to add-on therapy with cognitive-behavioral group therapy (CBT-arm), add-on therapy with ultra-brief pulse continuation electroconvulsive therapy (ECT-arm), or no add-on therapy (MED-arm). After the 6 months of continuation treatment, patients were followed-up for another 6 months. The primary outcome parameter was the proportion of patients who remained well after 12 months. Of 90 MDD patients starting the acute phase, 70% responded and 47% remitted to acute ECT. After 6 months of continuation treatment, significant differences were observed in the three treatment arms with sustained response rates of 77% in the CBT-arm, 40% in the ECT-arm, and 44% in the MED-arm. After 12 months, these differences remained stable with sustained response rates of 65% in the CBT-arm, 28% in the ECT-arm, and 33% in the MED-arm. These results suggest that ultra-brief pulse ECT as a continuation treatment correlates with low sustained response rates. However, the main finding implicates cognitive-behavioral group therapy in combination with antidepressants might be an effective continuation treatment to sustain response after successful ECT in MDD patients.Biological psychiatry 12/2013; · 8.93 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Major depressive disorder (MDD) is among the most frequent and debilitating psychiatric disorders. Efficacious psychotherapy and antidepressant medications have been developed, and two-thirds of depressed patients respond to single-modality treatment; however, only about one-third of patients remit to single-modality treatments with no meaningful differences in outcomes between treatment types. This article describes the major clinical considerations in choosing between single-modality or combination treatments for MDD. A review of the relevant literature and meta-analyses provides suggestions for which treatment to use for which patient and when each treatment or combination should be provided. The review summarizes the moderators of single-modality and combination-treatment outcomes. We describe models of mechanisms of treatment efficacy and discuss recent treatment-specific neurobiological mechanisms of change.Annual Review of Psychology 01/2014; 65:267-300. · 20.53 Impact Factor
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ABSTRACT: Although interpersonal therapy (IPT) has demonstrated efficacy for mood and other disorders, little is known about how IPT works. We present interpersonal change mechanisms that we hypothesize account for symptom change in IPT. Integrating relational theory and insights based on research findings regarding stress, social support, and illness, IPT highlights contextual factors thought to precipitate and maintain psychiatric disorders. It frames therapy around a central interpersonal problem in the patient's life, a current crisis or relational predicament that is disrupting social support and increasing interpersonal stress. By mobilizing and working collaboratively with the patient to resolve this problem, IPT seeks to activate several interpersonal change mechanisms. These include: 1) enhancing social support, 2) decreasing interpersonal stress, 3) facilitating emotional processing, and 4) improving interpersonal skills. We hope that articulating these mechanisms will help therapists to formulate cases and better maintain focus within an IPT framework. Here we propose interpersonal mechanisms that might explain how IPT's interpersonal focus leads to symptom change. Future work needs to specify and test candidate mediators in clinical trials. We anticipate that pursuing this more systematic strategy will lead to important refinements and improvements in IPT and enhance its application in a range of clinical populations.Clinical psychology review 09/2013; 33(8):1134-1147. · 7.18 Impact Factor