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(p. 138) Depression in Older Adults 

(p. 138) Depression in Older Adults
(p. 138) Depression in Older Adults

Myrna M. Weissman

, John C. Markowitz

, and Gerald L. Klerman

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date: 14 July 2020

Depression ranks among the most common psychiatric diagnoses in older adults. This chapter gives an overview of the use of IPT for depression in older adults. Older patients presenting for treatment of major depression should undergo a complete medical evaluation to rule out comorbid general medical illness that may account for the symptoms. Older adults find the medical model of depression used in IPT appealing because their other health problems often render it familiar. They may be less acquainted with the view of depression as a medical illness and may need psychoeducation about depression and its treatment. Therapists who are treating geriatric patients need to fight negative, ageist views of the elderly. Ample evidence from controlled clinical trials shows that psychotherapy, particularly IPT, is a useful, efficacious, and accepted treatment in depressed elderly adults. A case example of the use of IPT in a widower is provided.

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