“Previous studies showed that about two-thirds of the patients with major depressive disorder will recuperate on anti-depressant medications; about one-third of the patients will experience full remission, but half will then deteriorate before fully recovering. Cognitive therapy is as effective as medication alone, but its effects tend to be long lasting…
“Our results indicate that combining cognitive therapy with antidepressant medicine can make a much bigger difference than we had thought to about one-third of patients suffering from major depressive disorder,” said Steven Hollon, the Gertrude Conaway Professor of Psychology and lead author of the study, said in a statement. “On the other hand, it does not appear to provide any additional benefit for the other two-thirds.”
Study: Effect of Cognitive Therapy With Antidepressant Medications vs Antidepressants Alone on the Rate of Recovery in Major Depressive Disorder (JAMA Psychiatry). From the abstract:
- Importance: Antidepressant medication (ADM) is efficacious in the treatment of depression, but not all patients achieve remission and fewer still achieve recovery with ADM alone.
- Objective: To determine the effects of combining cognitive therapy (CT) with ADM vs ADM alone on remission and recovery in major depressive disorder (MDD).
- Conclusions and Relevance: Cognitive therapy combined with ADM treatment enhances the rates of recovery from MDD relative to ADMs alone, with the effect limited to patients with severe, nonchronic depression.
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