Thursday, 21 August 2003
This presentation is part of : Approaches to Depression

S095-003 Positive Effects of Counseling and Activation on Depressive Symptoms

Sirkka-Liisa Kivel and M Salminen. Department of Family Medicine, University of Turku, Turku, Finland

Background: The majority of older persons with mild depressions are treated by family physicians. Studies on the effects of support by family physicians or social activation programs on the course of mild depressions are needed.

Objective: The aim was to describe the effects of a social activation program on depressive symptoms of older coronary heart disease patients.

Design: A prospective, randomized, controlled follow-up study.

Material and Methods: The material consisted of 268 coronary heart disease patients aged 65 years or over living in the Lieto municipality in south-western Finland in 1998. These patients were, in 1999, randomly assigned to a counseling and activation program and to usual health care. The intervention, consisting of counseling and activating, lasted 1.5 years.

Results: Health habits and cholesterol levels improved in the intervention group compared to the usual care group. Changes in depressive symptoms among men with mild or moderate depression in the intervention group were positive compared to those in the corresponding control group.

Conclusions: A counseling and activation intervention had positive effects on depressive symptoms among older male coronary heart patients with mild or moderate depression.

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