Background: Although many evidences suggest the presence of specific therapeutic factors in brief dynamic therapy (BDT), few studies have investigated its efficacy in the treatment of depressive disorders in comparison to other psychotherapies. The aim of this study was to determine whether BDT is more effective than brief supportive psychotherapy (BSP) and waiting list condition in the treatment of minor depressive disorders. Method: Thirty patients with primary DSM-IV dysthymic disorder, depressive disorder not otherwise specified or adjustment disorder with depressed mood completed a randomized controlled trial with three treatment groups (BDT, BSP, waiting list condition). A 6-month follow-up was performed for patients treated with both psychotherapeutic approaches. Other psychiatric treatments were not permitted throughout the treatment period and the 6-month follow-up. Symptoms were assessed at baseline, at the end of treatment, and after 6 months of follow-up. Results: Patients treated with both psychotherapeutic approaches showed a significant improvement after treatment in comparison to non-treated controls, but BDT was more effective at follow-up evaluation. Conclusions: BDT is a promising treatment for minor depressive disorders. This study also suggests that BDT is more effective than supportive psychotherapy in improving the long-term outcome of depressive disorders.
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