Purpose: The goal of the work described in this article was to test the possibility of preventing depression among adolescents with epilepsy.
Methods: Adolescents with newly diagnosed epilepsy (104 patients) were screened for depression. The risk for depression was increased in 30 (28.8%) patients (mean age 17.4, 60% females) who were randomized into two equal treatment groups: (1) cognitive-behavioral intervention (CBI) group and (2) treatment with counseling as usual (TAU) group. The Beck Depression Inventory (BDI), Center for Epidemiological Study on Depression (CES-D) scale, Hamilton Depression Scale (HAMD), and Quality of Life in Epilepsy Inventory (QOLIE-31) were administered at baseline and during the 9-month follow-up.
Results: Initial BDI and HAMD scores for the two groups were comparable. Depression was diagnosed during follow-up in three patients in the TAU group. Subthreshold depressive disorder significantly improved at follow-up in the BCI group compared with the TAU group (P<0.05). QOLIE-31 Total scores significantly correlated with both mood improvement and seizure-free state.