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Life-review therapy with computer supplements for depression in the elderly: A randomized controlled trial


Preschl, Barbara; Maercker, Andreas; Wagner, Birgit; Forstmeier, Simon; Baños, Rosa M; Alcañiz, Mariano; Castilla, Diana; Botella, Cristina (2012). Life-review therapy with computer supplements for depression in the elderly: A randomized controlled trial. Aging & mental health, 16(8):964-974.

Abstract

Life-review therapy has been recognized as an effective therapeutic approach for depression in older adults. Additionally, the use of new media is becoming increasingly common in psychological interventions. The aim of this study was to investigate a life-review therapy in a face-to-face setting with additional computer use. This study explored whether a six-week life-review therapy with computer supplements from the e-mental health Butler system constitutes an effective approach to treat depression in older adults aged 65 and over. A total of 36 participants with elevated levels of depressive symptoms were randomized to a treatment group or a waiting-list control group and completed the post-assessment. Fourteen individuals in the intervention group completed the follow-up assessment. Analyses revealed significant changes from pre- to post-treatment or follow-up for depression, well-being, self-esteem, and obsessive reminiscence, but not for integrative reminiscence and life satisfaction. Depressive symptoms decreased significantly over time until the three-month follow-up in the intervention group compared to the control group (pre to post: d = 1.13; pre to follow-up: d = 1.27; and group × time effect pre to post: d = 0.72). Furthermore, the therapy led to an increase in well-being and a decrease in obsessive reminiscence among the participants in the intervention group from pre-treatment to follow-up (well-being: d = 0.70; obsessive reminiscence: d = 0.93). Analyses further revealed a significant but small group × time effect regarding self-esteem (d = 0.19). By and large, the results indicate that the life-review therapy in this combined setting could be recommended for depressive older adults.

Abstract

Life-review therapy has been recognized as an effective therapeutic approach for depression in older adults. Additionally, the use of new media is becoming increasingly common in psychological interventions. The aim of this study was to investigate a life-review therapy in a face-to-face setting with additional computer use. This study explored whether a six-week life-review therapy with computer supplements from the e-mental health Butler system constitutes an effective approach to treat depression in older adults aged 65 and over. A total of 36 participants with elevated levels of depressive symptoms were randomized to a treatment group or a waiting-list control group and completed the post-assessment. Fourteen individuals in the intervention group completed the follow-up assessment. Analyses revealed significant changes from pre- to post-treatment or follow-up for depression, well-being, self-esteem, and obsessive reminiscence, but not for integrative reminiscence and life satisfaction. Depressive symptoms decreased significantly over time until the three-month follow-up in the intervention group compared to the control group (pre to post: d = 1.13; pre to follow-up: d = 1.27; and group × time effect pre to post: d = 0.72). Furthermore, the therapy led to an increase in well-being and a decrease in obsessive reminiscence among the participants in the intervention group from pre-treatment to follow-up (well-being: d = 0.70; obsessive reminiscence: d = 0.93). Analyses further revealed a significant but small group × time effect regarding self-esteem (d = 0.19). By and large, the results indicate that the life-review therapy in this combined setting could be recommended for depressive older adults.

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:06 Faculty of Arts > Institute of Psychology
Dewey Decimal Classification:150 Psychology
Uncontrolled Keywords:Psychotherapeutisches Zentrum des Psychologischen Instituts UZH
Date:2012
Deposited On:04 Sep 2012 13:20
Last Modified:05 Apr 2016 15:57
Publisher:Taylor & Francis
ISSN:1364-6915
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1080/13607863.2012.702726
PubMed ID:22788983

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