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Behav Res Ther. 2009 Jul;47(7):569-76. doi: 10.1016/j.brat.2009.03.008. Epub 2009 Mar 27.

Imagery rescripting as a brief stand-alone treatment for depressed patients with intrusive memories.

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Clinical, Educational & Health Psychology, University College London, London WC1E 6BT, UK.


Many depressed patients report intrusive and distressing memories of specific events in their lives. Where present, these memories are believed to act as a maintaining factor. A series of ten patients with major depressive disorder and intrusive memories, many of them reporting severe, chronic, or recurrent episodes of depression, were given an average of 8.1 sessions of imagery rescripting as a stand-alone treatment. Hierarchical linear modelling demonstrated large treatment effects that were well maintained at one year follow-up. Seven patients showed reliable improvement, and six patients clinically significant improvement. These gains were achieved entirely by working through patients' visual imagination and without verbal challenging of negative beliefs. Spontaneous changes in beliefs, rumination, and behaviour were nevertheless observed.

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