Psychological treatment of depression in institutional settings: A meta-analytic review

Pim Cuijpers, Marketa Ciharova, Clara Miguel, Mathias Harrer, David D. Ebert, Eva Lotta Brakemeier, Eirini Karyotaki

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

13 Scopus citations

Abstract

Background: Many depressed patients are treated in institutional settings. The number of studies focusing on psychotherapies for depressed patients in institutional settingsis limited, and only a few up-to-date meta-analyses have integrated the results of these studies. Methods: We conducted a meta-analysis of 32 randomized trials with 37 comparisons between psychotherapy and control conditions, examining the effects of psychotherapy for adult patients in institutional settings with depressive disorders. Results: We found that psychotherapy had a significant, small to moderate effect on depressive symptoms (g=0.42; 95% CI: 0.29~0.56), with low to moderate heterogeneity (I2=33; 95% CI: 0~55). The effects remained small but significant after adjustment for publication bias (g=0.27; 95% CI: 0.12~0.42) and in the studies with low risk of bias (g=0.32; 95% CI: 0.11~0.52). The effects were largely retained at 9 to 15 months follow-up and still significant, again after adjustment for publication bias and in studies with low risk of bias. We found no significant difference across types of institutional settings, including psychiatric inpatient settings and nursing homes, although no studies with a low risk of bias were available in nursing homes. Limitations: We included different types of institutional settings, although we did not find a significant difference between settings. The number of studies was small and risk of bias was high in a considerable number of trials. Conclusions: This meta-analysis provides evidence for a small to moderate and sustained effect of psychotherapy in patients in institutional settings with depression.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)340-350
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Affective Disorders
Volume286
DOIs
StatePublished - 1 May 2021
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • cognitive behavior therapy
  • depression
  • inpatients
  • meta-analysis
  • nursing homes
  • psychotherapy

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