Psychotherapy may not be effective for patients on antidepressants

(ORDO NEWS) — The first and most popular treatment for depression is antidepressants. Or psychotherapy?

Seems like you only need to pick one. European scientists came to the conclusion that together these funds do not work.

Depression is not easy to treat, but it is necessary

A large (and ongoing) international study of clinicians from the European Resistant Depression Study Group found that adding psychotherapy to antidepressants does not improve outcomes in patients with severe depression.

The rate of clinical depression has doubled over the past 30 years, and the WHO estimates that around 322 million people worldwide suffer from it.

This is roughly equivalent to the combined populations of Germany, France, Spain, Italy and the UK combined.

But the key is that about a third of patients with severe depression do not respond well to therapy; they have resistance, and this requires the search for new methods of treatment.

Psychotherapy may not be effective for patients on antidepressants 2

Depressive choice

Despite clinical guidelines and studies that advocate psychotherapy and its combination with antidepressants, research shows that in real life it has no added value for those who have already been treated with antidepressants for severe depression.

Another study compared 292 depressed patients receiving cognitive behavioral therapy, which is the recommended psychotherapeutic strategy for severe depression, with 107 patients.

The latter received other psychotherapeutic methods: psychoanalytic psychotherapy or systemic psychotherapy. The researchers found that there was no difference in treatment outcomes.

“This does not necessarily mean the uselessness of psychotherapy. But this is a clear sign that the current method of treating depressed patients with psychotherapy is not entirely effective and needs to be critically evaluated,” said researcher Dr. Lucy Bartova (Medical University of Vienna).


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