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1- Laser application in Medical Sciences Research Center, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.
2- Department of Psychology, University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran.
3- Laser Application in Medical Sciences Research Center, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Tehran, Iran.
4- Centre for Emotion and Health, Department of Psychiatry, Dalhousie University, Halifax, Canada.
Background: While major depression has been treated with Laser Acupuncture (LA) and Intensive Short-Term Dynamic Psychotherapy (ISTDP), the relative efficacy of these two methods and the combination of the two is unclear. ISTDP is a form of dynamic psychotherapy based on enabling the experience and processing of blocked complex feelings while LA is based on opening of blocked energy meridians.
Objectives: The present study aimed to compare the effectiveness of LA and ISTDP and the combination of the two in the treatment of major depression.
Methods: A randomized controlled trial was carried out with 45 depressed patients on three equal arms (each group: 15 patients): Group I) LA, group II) ISTDP, and Group III) combined LA and ISTDP. Participants were evaluated at six time points using the Hamilton Rating Depression Scale (HDRS), Structured Clinical Interview for DSM Disorder (SCID), and Symptom Checklist-90 (SCL90) including baseline, session 8, session 12, 1-month follow-up, 2-month follow-up, and 3- month follow-up.
Results: HDRS and SCID ratings showed within-group reductions. Both SCL90 and HDRS scores reduced over time in the three groups. At one of the follow-up times, combined LA + ISTDP showed a greater reduction than either individual treatment on the SCL-90 depression subscale but not on HDRS or SCID.
Conclusions: The results of this study indicated that LA and ISTDP, both based on releasing blocked energies, are effective in treating major depression. The combination of the two methods may be more effective in reducing depression symptoms.
Type of Study: Original | Subject: Behavioral Neuroscience
Received: 2023/11/19 | Accepted: 2024/04/15

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