Efficacy of Psychosocial Treatments for Geriatric Depression: A Quantitative Review

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A meta-analysis of 17 studies examined the efficacy of psychosocial treatments for depression among older adults. Studies were included only if a comparison was made to a control condition (no-, delayed-, or placebo-treatment) or another psychosocial intervention. Results indicated that treatments were reliably more effective than no-treatment on self-rated and clinician-rated measures of depression. Effect sizes for studies involving participants with major depression disorder were also reliably different from zero, as were effect sizes from studies involving participants with less severe levels of depression. These findings compare favorably with several other quantitative reviews of treatments for depression. Results suggest more balanced presentations of the potential benefits of psychosocial interventions are warranted.

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