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Self-Guided Psychological Treatment for Depressive Symptoms: A Meta-Analysis
Vrije University Amsterdam.
Vrije University Amsterdam.
Linköping University, Department of Behavioural Sciences and Learning. Linköping University, Faculty of Arts and Sciences.
Northwestern University.
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2011 (English)In: PLoS ONE, ISSN 1932-6203, Vol. 6, no 6Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Background: A number of trials have examined the effects of self-guided psychological intervention, without any contact between the participants and a therapist or coach. The results and sizes of these trials have been mixed. This is the first quantitative meta-analysis, aimed at organizing and evaluating the literature, and estimating effect size. Method: We conducted systematic literature searches in PubMed, PsycINFO and Embase up to January 2010, and identified additional studies through earlier meta-analyses, and the references of included studies. We identified seven randomized controlled trials that met our inclusion criteria, with a total of 1,362 respondents. The overall quality of the studies was high. A post-hoc power calculation showed that the studies had sufficient statistical power to detect an effect size of d = 0.19. Results: The overall mean effect size indicating the difference between self-guided psychological treatment and control groups at post-test was d = 0.28 (pless than0.001), which corresponds to a NNT of 6.41. At 4 to 12 months follow-up the effect size was d = 0.23. There was no indication for significant publication bias. Conclusions: We found evidence that self-guided psychological treatment has a small but significant effect on participants with increased levels of depressive symptomatology.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Public Library of Science (PLoS) , 2011. Vol. 6, no 6
National Category
Social Sciences
URN: urn:nbn:se:liu:diva-69848DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0021274ISI: 000291985100023OAI: diva2:433442
Original Publication: Pim Cuijpers, Tara Donker, Robert Johansson, David C. Mohr, Annemieke van Straten and Gerhard Andersson, Self-Guided Psychological Treatment for Depressive Symptoms: A Meta-Analysis, 2011, PLoS ONE, (6), 6. Copyright: Public Library of Science (PLoS) Available from: 2011-08-10 Created: 2011-08-08 Last updated: 2014-11-28

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