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Nervenarzt. 2017 Jul;88(7):765-778. doi: 10.1007/s00115-016-0222-x.

[Physical activity as therapeutic intervention for depression].

[Article in German]

Author information

1
Institut für Sportwissenschaft, Universität Innsbruck, Fürstenweg 185, 6020, Innsbruck, Österreich. Larissa.ledochowski@uibk.ac.at.
2
Kepler Universitätsklinikum, Neuromed Campus, Wagner-Jauregg-Weg 15, 4020, Linz, Österreich.
3
Institut für Sportwissenschaft, Universität Innsbruck, Fürstenweg 185, 6020, Innsbruck, Österreich.

Abstract

AIM:

This article gives a conspectus of the present state of research on the efficiency of exercise as a treatment for patients suffering from depression.

METHODS:

A systematic review of articles published between December 1980 and March 2016 was carried out. The review focused on studies that examined the effects of exercise compared to control conditions in the treatment of depression. Extracted and analyzed information from the articles included details about participants, characteristics of exercise and control conditions, assessments, study design and outcomes.

RESULTS:

A total of 34 of the 48 studies included in the literature search reported a significant reduction of depressive symptoms due to exercise interventions. There was a trend to reduced depressive symptoms following the exercise interventions in five studies. In nine studies no positive impact of exercise on depression and affective well-being could be detected.

DISCUSSION:

This review article shows that physical activity decreases depressive symptoms and increases affective well-being in patients with depressive diseases; therefore, exercise should be recommended as a component of depression treatment within the framework of a multi-dimensional approach.

KEYWORDS:

Affective well-being; Depression; Evaluation studies; Exercise; Physical activity

PMID:
27679515
DOI:
10.1007/s00115-016-0222-x
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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