Effect of reminiscence therapy on depression in older adults: a systematic review

Int J Nurs Stud. 2003 May;40(4):335-45. doi: 10.1016/s0020-7489(02)00101-3.


The objective of this systematic review is to provide healthcare professionals with information to assist in their decision to utilize reminiscence therapy for depression reduction in older adults outside of the primary care setting. Nine reviewed studies that were randomized controlled trials not only varied in person, outcome measurement, control, and exposure/intervention, the results of these studies were also diverse. About half of these studies showed that reminiscence therapy resulted in statistical significantly decrease in depression. Despite that reminiscence therapy requires further testing, it should be considered as a valuable intervention. Future directions of studies on reminiscence therapy are suggested.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Aged* / psychology
  • Bias
  • Data Interpretation, Statistical
  • Depressive Disorder / diagnosis
  • Depressive Disorder / psychology
  • Depressive Disorder / therapy*
  • Geriatric Assessment
  • Humans
  • Life Change Events
  • Memory*
  • Personal Satisfaction
  • Psychiatric Status Rating Scales
  • Psychotherapy / methods*
  • Psychotherapy / standards
  • Research Design / standards
  • Treatment Outcome