Managing depression in older age: psychological interventions

Cuijpers, Pim, Karyotaki, Eirini, Pot, Anne Magriet, Park, Mijung and Reynolds III, Charles F. (2014) Managing depression in older age: psychological interventions. Maturitas, 79 2: 160-169. doi:10.1016/j.maturitas.2014.05.027

Author Cuijpers, Pim
Karyotaki, Eirini
Pot, Anne Magriet
Park, Mijung
Reynolds III, Charles F.
Title Managing depression in older age: psychological interventions
Journal name Maturitas   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 0378-5122
Publication date 2014-10-01
Year available 2014
Sub-type Critical review of research, literature review, critical commentary
DOI 10.1016/j.maturitas.2014.05.027
Open Access Status PMC
Volume 79
Issue 2
Start page 160
End page 169
Total pages 10
Place of publication Shannon, Co. Clare, Ireland
Publisher Elsevier Ireland
Language eng
Subject 2729 Obstetrics and Gynaecology
1300 Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology
Abstract The number of studies on psychological treatments of depression in older adults has increased considerably in the past years. Therefore, we conducted an updated meta-analysis of these studies. A total of 44 studies comparing psychotherapies to control groups, other therapies or pharmacotherapy could be included. The overall effect size indicating the difference between psychotherapy and control groups was g = 0.64 (95% CI: 0.47-0.80), which corresponds with a NNT of 3. These effects were maintained at 6 months or longer post randomization (g = 0.27; 95%CI: 0.16-0.37). Specific types of psychotherapies that were found to be effective included cognitive behavior therapy (g = 0.45; 95% CI: 0.29-0.60), life review therapy (g = 0.59; 95% CI: 0.36-0.82) and problem-solving therapy (g = 0.46; 95% CI: 0.18-0.74). Treatment compared to waiting list control groups resulted in larger effect sizes than treatments compared to care-as-usual and other control groups (p < 0.05). Studies with lower quality resulted in higher effect sizes than high-quality studies (p < 0.05). Direct comparisons between different types of psychotherapy suggested that cognitive behavior therapy and problem-solving therapy may be more effective than non-directive counseling and other psychotherapies may be less effective than other therapies. This should be considered with caution, however, because of the small number of studies. There were not enough studies to examine the long-term effects of psychotherapies and to compare psychotherapy with pharmacotherapy or combined treatments. We conclude that it is safe to assume that psychological therapies in general are effective in late-life depression, and this is especially well-established for cognitive behavior therapy and problem-solving therapy.
Keyword Depression
Older adults
Cognitive behavior therapy
Life review
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Confirmed Code
Grant ID P30MH90333
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Critical review of research, literature review, critical commentary
Collections: Official 2015 Collection
School of Psychology Publications
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