[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: This study is a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled clinical trial examining the effects of an intensive cognitive-behavioral mood management treatment (CBTD) and of bupropion, both singularly and in combination, on smoking cessation in adult smokers. As an extension of our previous work, we planned to examine the synergistic effects of CBTD and bupropion on smoking cessation outcomes in general and among smokers with depression vulnerability factors. Participants were 524 smokers (47.5% female, M (age) = 44.27 years) who were randomized to one of four 12-week treatments: (a) standard, cognitive-behavioral smoking cessation treatment (ST) plus bupropion (BUP), (b) ST plus placebo (PLAC), (c) standard cessation treatment combined with cognitive-behavioral treatment for depression (CBTD) plus BUP, and (d) CBTD plus PLAC. Follow-up assessments were conducted 2, 6, and 12 months after treatment, and self-reported abstinence was verified biochemically. Consistent with previous studies, bupropion, in comparison with placebo, resulted in better smoking outcomes in both intensive group treatments. Adding CBTD to standard intensive group treatment did not result in improved smoking cessation outcomes. In addition, neither CBTD nor bupropion, either alone or in combination, was differentially effective for smokers with single-past-episode major depressive disorder (MDD), recurrent MDD, or elevated depressive symptoms. However, findings with regard to recurrent MDD and elevated depressive symptoms should be interpreted with caution given the low rate of recurrent MDD and the low level of depressive symptoms in our sample. An a priori test of treatment effects in smokers with these depression vulnerability factors is warranted in future clinical trials.
Nicotine & Tobacco Research 08/2007; 9(7):721-30. · 2.48 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Repeated experiences with major depressive disorder (MDD) may strengthen associations between negative thinking and dysphoria, rendering negative cognition more accessible and pronounced with each episode. According to cognitive theory, greater negative cognition should lead to a more protracted episode of depression. In this study of 121 adults with MDD, number of previous episodes was associated with slower change in depression across inpatient and outpatient treatment. Further, although pretreatment negative cognition and pretreatment family impairment both uniquely predicted slower change in depressive symptoms, only negative cognition mediated the association between depression history and depression change. Findings suggest that repeated MDD episodes are specifically associated with increased negative cognition, which in turn contributes to a more pernicious course of symptom change during treatment for depression.
Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology 07/2007; 75(3):422-31. · 4.85 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Despite a central role for dysfunctional attitudes in cognitive theories of depression and the widespread use of the Dysfunctional Attitude Scale, form A (DAS-A; A. Weissman, 1979), the psychometric development of the DAS-A has been relatively limited. The authors used nonparametric item response theory methods to examine the DAS-A items and develop a briefer version of the scale. Using DAS-A data obtained from depressed participants enrolled in 2 large depression treatment studies (N = 367), the authors developed a 9-item DAS form (DAS-SF₁). In addition, because 2 versions of the DAS are needed for certain study designs, they also developed a 2nd short version (DAS-SF₂). These short forms were highly correlated with the original 40-item DAS-A ( rs ranged from .91 to .93), exhibited change similar to that of the DAS-A over the course of treatment, were moderately correlated with related self-report assessments, predicted concurrent depression severity, and predicted change in depression from before to after treatment. Taken together, the authors believe the DAS-SF₁ and DAS-SF₂ provide an efficient and accurate assessment of dysfunctional attitudes among depressed individuals.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Depressed breastfeeding women may have concerns about taking antidepressant medications due to fears regarding infant exposure. We examined the clinical records of 73 breastfeeding women who sought depression treatment, to identify characteristics of those who took antidepressants. Compared to women who were not treated with pharmacotherapy, breastfeeding patients who took antidepressants had more severe symptoms, greater functional impairment, more extensive psychiatric histories, and were less likely to be involved in a committed relationship. No differences were found in age, race, or education.
Depression and Anxiety 05/2007; 25(10):888-91. · 4.61 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Previous research is inconsistent regarding the significance of mood-incongruent psychotic symptoms in relation to the severity and course of bipolar disorder. In the present study, bipolar I patients were assessed at index hospitalization using standardized symptom measures and followed up to 28 months. We contrasted the symptomatic course in patients experiencing mood-congruent versus mood-incongruent psychotic symptoms. Results revealed that patients spent an average of 29% of the time during follow-up in a mood episode, but only 5% of the time with psychotic symptoms. Few differences were found at the index hospitalization and no differences were found on any longitudinal course variables between mood-congruence subtypes. Although experiencing high levels of psychosis at baseline, both subtypes improved considerably following hospitalization, and psychotic symptom levels remained relatively stable. Current results suggest that when provided efficacious treatment, mood-incongruent psychotic mania does not predict a worse symptomatic course of illness.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The short allele in a variable repeat sequence of the promoter region of the serotonin transporter gene (5-HTTLPR) has been associated with stronger activation in brain regions critical for processing emotional stimuli. The authors examined whether variants of the 5-HTTLPR promoter polymorphism were also associated with individual differences in attentional biases for emotional stimuli. Words related to anxious and dysphoric emotional states were presented to psychiatric inpatients in a standard dot-probe reaction time task. Compared with participants with two long alleles, carriers of the short 5-HTTLPR allele exhibited a stronger attentional bias for anxious word stimuli. No genetic group difference was observed for dysphoric word stimuli. Findings from this preliminary study highlight the potential for integrating genetic and cognitive models of psychopathology.
Journal of Abnormal Psychology 03/2007; 116(1):208-12. · 4.86 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: A randomized, placebo-controlled trial has yet to be completed in patients with psychological nonepileptic seizures (NES). Treatment publications for NES are limited to class III trials and class IV reports. Little is written on the methodology of treatment trials in NES. The authors describe the procedures and limitations of such a trial to inform future NES treatment trials, based on their prospective, open-label pharmacological, feasibility trial. The authors review the recruitment, enrollment, completion of surveys, compliance, and follow-up of patients with NES. The majority of patients who enrolled, readily completed surveys and took the medication during the trial. Twelve patients were screened, eight enrolled, and six completed the trial. The authors discuss the use of outcomes and the various symptoms scales in the trial. A comprehensive neuropsychiatric initial assessment and assessing cognitive, emotional, behavioral, and psychosocial measures are important for monitoring the outcomes in NES treatment RCTs.
Journal of Neuropsychiatry 02/2007; 19(4):391-8. · 2.40 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Psychotic depression is a relatively prevalent mood disorder associated with greater symptom severity, a poorer course of illness and higher levels of functional impairment compared with nonpsychotic depression. Separate lines of investigation suggest that various forms of cognitive-behavioral therapy are efficacious for treating severe forms of nonpsychotic depression as well as primary psychotic disorders. However, there currently are no empirically supported psychotherapies specifically designed for treating psychotic depression.
We review the efficacy of current somatic treatments for the disorder and discuss the limited data to date on potentially useful psychotherapeutic approaches. In particular, we describe the clinical improvement observed in a subgroup of hospitalized patients with psychotic depression treated with Acceptance and Commitment Therapy as part of a larger clinical trial.
Pilot results demonstrated that Acceptance and Commitment Therapy was associated with clinically significant reductions in acute symptom severity and impairment compared with treatment as usual.
The findings suggest that patients with psychotic depression can benefit from psychotherapy. Clinical and research recommendations in this area are presented.
Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics 02/2007; 76(5):271-7. · 7.23 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Previous research suggests that psychotic major depression (PMD) is associated with greater illness severity and functional impairment as well as poorer treatment response to antidepressants and psychotherapies compared with nonpsychotic major depression. Although patients with PMD exhibit a number of neurobiological abnormalities, little research has been conducted to date on possible psychological factors that are related to illness in this depression subtype. In the current study, baseline data were pooled from 2 clinical trials in which depressed patients (n = 235) were recruited during a psychiatric hospitalization for an acute episode. Twelve percent (n = 28) of this treatment-seeking sample met criteria for PMD and showed elevated levels of depression severity and dysfunctional beliefs compared with individuals with nonpsychotic major depression. However, even after controlling for depression severity and other relevant baseline variables, only a measure of common dysfunctional beliefs differentiated those with vs those without psychotic features. Furthermore, higher levels of depressive cognitions were related to poorer psychosocial functioning and suicidality in PMD patients. Results suggest that elevated levels of common negative cognitions in depressed patients may be associated with the presence of more severe psychotic symptoms. Adapted cognitive-behavioral treatments may be useful for treating patients with PMD specifically.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: There is growing evidence that a functional polymorphism in the serotonin transporter gene (5-HTTLPR) moderates the impact of negative life events (e.g., childhood abuse) on the development of depression. However, it is unclear whether the gene x environment interaction predicts suicide attempts specifically. In addition, previous studies have not examined different forms of childhood abuse separately. In the current study, we found that 5-HTTLPR genotype moderated the link between childhood physical and sexual, but not emotional, abuse and adult psychiatric inpatients' histories of suicide attempts.
Suicide and Life-Threatening Behavior 01/2007; 36(6):687-93. · 1.33 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: In a sample of 62 patients with Bipolar I disorder, the authors used a repeated measures longitudinal design to examine whether global family functioning was associated with the presence of a concurrent bipolar episode as well as whether global family functioning was associated with the presence of manic and depressive episodes in the following 3 months. Participants were recruited for a randomized clinical trial examining the efficacy of family treatments combined with pharmacotherapy for bipolar disorder. Global family functioning was repeatedly measured with both clinician-rated and patient-rated assessment instruments over the 28-month study period. Results indicated that mood episodes were associated with concurrent global family functioning within individuals, but global family functioning was not associated with episode status in the subsequent 3 months. The repeated measures nature of these results suggests that global family functioning and bipolar episodes may fluctuate in concert with each other but that global family functioning is not associated with subsequent change in episode status.
Journal of Family Psychology 01/2007; 20(4):701-4. · 1.66 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Within a sample of patients with major depressive disorder (MDD; n = 121) and bipolar affective disorder (BPAD; n = 69), the authors examined (a) diagnostic differences in family functioning at acute episode, (b) diagnostic differences in family functioning at episode recovery, (c) within-group changes in family functioning from acute episode to recovery, and (d) whether within-group changes from acute episode to recovery varied by diagnosis. Using a multidimensional model, the authors evaluated interviewer, patient, and family ratings. Overall, patients with MDD and BPAD evidenced similar levels of family impairment at acute episode and recovery. Generally, patients in both groups experienced improvement in family functioning over time, yet mean scores at recovery continued to range from fair to poor. Although certain specific differences emerged, diagnostic groups appeared to be more similar than different in level and pattern of family functioning.
Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology 01/2007; 74(6):1192-202. · 4.85 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: The study aimed at understanding the relationship between personality pathology and couple functioning, both in terms of general functioning and communication specifically, in a sample of 146 psychiatric outpatients. The results indicated that couple communication was best predicted by a combination of the symptoms within each of the three personality disorder clusters and the total number of personality disorder symptoms while general family functioning was best predicted by the total number of Axis I disorders. No demographic variables were found to be related to the level of couple functioning. Future research needs to focus on understanding what makes it difficult for people with personality disorder traits to function in relationships.
Journal of Clinical Psychology 11/2006; 62(10):1275-89. · 2.12 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Promising results were obtained in an earlier pilot study of a preventive intervention based on the principles of interpersonal psychotherapy to reduce the risk of postpartum major depressive disorder. In this study, the authors examined whether the intervention would reduce the risk of postpartum major depressive disorder in a larger sample of pregnant women.
Ninety-nine pregnant women on public assistance who were assessed to be at risk for postpartum depression were randomly assigned to receive standard antenatal care plus the intervention or standard antenatal care only. Diagnostic interviews were administered 3 months after delivery to assess for major depressive disorder.
Within 3 months after delivery, eight (20%) of the women in the standard antenatal care condition had developed postpartum major depressive disorder, compared with two (4%) in the intervention condition.
This study provides further evidence for the efficacy of a brief intervention to reduce the occurrence of major depressive disorder among financially disadvantaged women during a postpartum period of 3 months.
American Journal of Psychiatry 09/2006; 163(8):1443-5. · 14.72 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Bipolar disorder is characterized by a chronic and fluctuating course of illness. Although nonadherence to pharmacotherapy is a frequent problem in the disorder, few studies have systematically explored psychosocial factors related to treatment discontinuation. Previous research with depressed patients receiving psychotherapy has suggested that expectancies for improvement are related to treatment outcomes and that the therapeutic alliance may partially mediate this relationship. The current study found evidence for a similar relationship between patients' initial expectancies for improvement, patient and doctor-rated alliance, and long-term outcomes in bipolar patients treated with pharmacotherapy for up to 28 months following an acute episode. The results highlight the need for the assessment of expectancies and alliance in bipolar treatment and suggest possible targets for psychosocial interventions.
Journal of Consulting and Clinical Psychology 09/2006; 74(4):671-6. · 4.85 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Many barriers exist for families seeking appropriate treatment for family problems. In an effort to minimize some of these barriers, we developed the Family Check-Up, a brief two-session family intervention. The Family Check-Up is based on the Drinker's Check-Up and consists of assessment, feedback, discussion, and goal setting. The purpose of the intervention is to help families identify and become motivated to make needed changes in any aspect of their family functioning. We conducted an open pilot trial of the Family Check-Up with 32 families. Our data suggest that the Family Check-Up (1) is sought out by the target audience, namely those with family problems; (2) is sought out by people with elevated depression symptoms or a history of treatment for depression or anxiety; (3) is feasible to conduct; (4) is acceptable to families; and (5) may be associated with changes in family functioning and depression symptoms over time. These results suggest that further research, particularly a randomized clinical trial, is warranted.
Family Process 07/2006; 45(2):223-36. · 1.73 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Although postpartum depression and other perinatal disorders have been the subject of increased research attention, important questions remain regarding women who actively seek psychiatric treatment during pregnancy and the postpartum period. In this study, we examined clinical records of 500 perinatal psychiatric patients who received treatment in a psychiatric day hospital (N = 398) or outpatient behavioral health clinic (N = 102). Patients' presenting diagnoses, psychiatric history, treatment course, and depressive symptoms were recorded. The majority of women had major depression as their primary diagnosis, with an average Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale score of over 20. Many depressed patients were diagnosed with comorbid anxiety and substance abuse disorders. Although most women were willing to take psychotropic medications, a sizable minority were not, particularly those who were breast-feeding. For more than a third of the sample, the treatment sought while pregnant or postpartum represented their first contact with the mental health system. Treatment implications are discussed.
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: We conducted a meta-analysis of 48 research reports on the efficacy of group therapy for depression. In 15 studies in which treated participants were compared to untreated controls, the average effect size was 1.03, suggesting that the average treated participant was better off than about 85% of the untreated participants. Analyses of clinically significant change suggested that treated participants improved substantially. However, even after treatment, participants still had pronounced depressive symptomatology relative to normative levels of depressive symptoms seen in non-depressed individuals. We conclude that group therapy is an efficacious treatment for depressed patients. However, numerous questions remain unanswered. For example, little empirical work has investigated what advantages group therapy might have over individual therapy. We conclude by making recommendations for future research in this area.
Clinical Psychology Science and Practice 05/2006; 8(1):98 - 116. · 2.92 Impact Factor
[show abstract][hide abstract] ABSTRACT: Studies comparing the efficacy of combined psychotherapy and pharmacotherapy to single treatment (i.e., either psychotherapy or pharmacotherapy alone) for major depression have not found consistent differences in outcome, resulting in a range of conclusions regarding the efficacy of combined treatment. In order to clarify the efficacy of combined treatment for depression, the authors conducted both a meta-analytic and qualitative review. Our findings suggest that combined treatment is associated with a small improvement in efficacy, and that this finding appears consistent across studies. Trends in the literature suggest that adding psychotherapy to antidepressant medication may be particularly efficacious among chronic or severely depressed patients. Further, adding cognitive-behavioral therapy to medication may be particularly efficacious in preventing relapse, particularly among individuals discontinuing medication use. The authors propose an illness-cognition model for better understanding outcomes in combined treatment.
Clinical Psychology Science and Practice 05/2006; 11(1):47 - 68. · 2.92 Impact Factor