CBT and severity of depression

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Joe Hayes summarises a new meta-analysis in the British Journal of Psychiatry that shows how the initial severity of depression does not alter the efficacy of cognitive behavioural therapy.

This is the first in a new series of Mental Elf blogs produced in partnership with the British Journal of Psychiatry.

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Specialist depression service may help people with persistent depression

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Ben Hannigan reports on a recent RCT of the efficacy and cost-effectiveness of a specialist depression service versus usual specialist mental health care to manage persistent depression.

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Mindfulness-based cognitive therapy can prevent recurrent depression

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Sarah McDonald reports on a meta-analysis published yesterday, which found that when compared with active treatment, mindfulness-based cognitive therapy resulted in a reduced risk of depressive relapse.

This blog also features a podcast interview with the lead author of the research, Professor Willem Kuyken.

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Antidepressants for depression: new BAP guidance

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Helge Hasselmann summarises the recently published evidence-based guidance on antidepressants for depression published by the British Association for Psychopharmacology.

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ECT for depression in the elderly

Depression and anxiety are quite common in people with dementia and mild cognitive impairment.

Andrew Shepherd reports on a post-hoc analysis of pre-existing trial data, which does little to convince him that ECT is a safe and effective treatment option for older people with severe depression.

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Ketamine for severe depression: what can we conclude from a small open label study?

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Last week the media reported widely on a study of ketamine for depression (McShane et al, 2014). As usual the headlines made bold assertions, the Telegraph running with “Horse tranquilliser Ketamine could cure severe depression” (Knapton, 2014). But what did the paper authored by an Oxford group and published in the Journal of Psychopharmacology really [read the full story…]

Physical health monitoring in serious mental illness is a priority in psychiatry, but where is the evidence that it works?

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It is widely acknowledged that individuals with serious mental illnesses (SMI) such as schizophrenia, bipolar disorder and severe depression have increased rates of mortality, due to poor physical health. As well as reducing quality of life and function and decreasing life expectancy, physical illness can worsen these mental illnesses. The reasons for this include lifestyle [read the full story…]