Developing Psychosocial Interventions for Depression in Dementia: Beginnings and Future Directions

Authors

  • George Niederehe

    Corresponding author
    1. National Institute of Mental Health
      Address correspondence to George Niederehe, Geriatrics Research Branch, National Institute of Mental Health, 6001 Executive Blvd, Room 7220, MSC 9634, Bethesda, MD 20892–9634. E-mail: gniedere@mail.nih.gov
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Address correspondence to George Niederehe, Geriatrics Research Branch, National Institute of Mental Health, 6001 Executive Blvd, Room 7220, MSC 9634, Bethesda, MD 20892–9634. E-mail: gniedere@mail.nih.gov

Abstract

Teri, McKenzie, and LaFazia's (this issue) review of outcome studies suggests that a number of psychosocial interventions have shown positive benefits relative to depression in dementia. However, considerably more research will be required to marshal convincing and practice-relevant evidence for the efficacy of particular intervention techniques in producing clinically significant amelioration of depression in older adults with dementia. This commentary discusses risk-benefit considerations surrounding the use of interventions in vulnerable older adults, as well as suggesting issues to be addressed in intervention development studies on this class of interventions.

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