Enduring effects for cognitive behavior therapy in the treatment of depression and anxiety

Annu Rev Psychol. 2006:57:285-315. doi: 10.1146/annurev.psych.57.102904.190044.


Recent studies suggest that cognitive and behavioral interventions have enduring effects that reduce risk for subsequent symptom return following treatment termination. These enduring effects have been most clearly demonstrated with respect to depression and the anxiety disorders. It remains unclear whether these effects are a consequence of the amelioration of the causal processes that generate risk or the introduction of compensatory strategies that offset them and whether these effects reflect the mobilization of cognitive or other mechanisms. No such enduring effects have been observed for the psychoactive medications, which appear to be largely palliative in nature. Other psychosocial interventions remain largely untested, although claims that they produce lasting change have long been made. Whether such enduring effects extend to other disorders remains to be seen, but the capacity to reduce risk following treatment termination is one of the major benefits provided by the cognitive and behavioral interventions with respect to the treatment of depression and the anxiety disorders.

Publication types

  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Anxiety / therapy*
  • Attitude to Health
  • Bipolar Disorder / prevention & control
  • Cognitive Behavioral Therapy / methods*
  • Depression / therapy*
  • Humans
  • Hypochondriasis / psychology
  • Interpersonal Relations
  • Panic Disorder / prevention & control
  • Retention, Psychology*
  • Secondary Prevention
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic / psychology
  • Stress Disorders, Post-Traumatic / therapy