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Arch Gen Psychiatry. 2000 Jan;57(1):29-36.

Clinical outcome after short-term psychotherapy for adolescents with major depressive disorder.

Author information

  • 1Department of Psychiatry, University of Pittsburgh Medical Center, Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic, PA 15213, USA. birmaherb@msx.upmc.edu

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Cognitive behavioral therapy has been shown to be more efficacious than alternative psychosocial interventions for the acute treatment of adolescents with major depressive disorder. However, the long-term impact of brief psychosocial interventions on the course of adolescent depression is not well established.

METHODS:

One hundred seven adolescents with major depressive disorder randomly assigned to 12 to 16 weeks of cognitive behavioral therapy, systemic behavioral family therapy, or nondirective supportive therapy were evaluated for 2 years after the psychotherapy trial to document the subsequent course and predictors of major depressive disorder.

RESULTS:

There were no long-term differential effects of the 3 psychotherapies. Most participants (80%) recovered (median time, 8.2 months from baseline), and 30% had a recurrence (median time, 4.2 months from recovery). Twenty-one percent were depressed during at least 80% of the follow-up period. Severity of depression (at baseline) and presence of self-reported parent-child conflict (at baseline and during the follow-up period) predicted lack of recovery, chronicity, and recurrence. Despite the similarity to clinically referred patients at baseline, patients recruited via advertisement were less likely to experience a recurrence.

CONCLUSIONS:

There were no significant differences in long-term outcome among cognitive behavioral therapy, systematic behavioral family therapy, and nondirective supportive therapy. While most participants in this study eventually recovered, those with severe depression and self-perceived parent-child conflict are at greater risk for chronic depression and recurrences.

PMID:
10632230
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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