An investigation into the effects of cognitive behavioral therapy on patients with chronic depression: a small case series
Gemma Louise Horn
University of Dundee, Scotland, UK
Background: National Institute for Clinical Excellence (NICE) guidelines recommend a combination of cognitive behavioral therapy (CBT) and antidepressants to treat chronic depression. The Cognitive Behavioral Analysis System of Psychotherapy (CBASP) is the only therapy model specifically designed for the treatment of chronic depression.
Objectives: To determine the clinical response to the CBASP of patients in a specialist clinical service for affective disorder and to ascertain their views on the value of the CBASP for their condition.
Methods: Qualitative data from interviews including a questionnaire and objective data from Becks Depression Inventory II symptom rating scales were used to monitor the progress of a small case series of five patients with chronic, treatment refractory depression as they received the CBASP over a 10-month period.
Results: Common themes from patient interviews show very positive engagement and attitudes to the CBASP from the questionnaire. Rating scales from Becks Depression Inventory II pre- and posttreatment showed very little change for three patients with improvements between 2 and 7 points but deterioration in symptoms of 2 points for the fourth patient.
Conclusion: The CBASP is a well-liked and positive therapy that helps patients manage their lives and deal with personal relationships, although objective data indicate little change in symptom severity.
Keywords: cognitive behavioral therapy, chronic depression, CBASP
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