A pilot study of interpersonal psychotherapy for alcohol-dependent women with co-occurring major depression

Subst Abus. 2013;34(3):233-41. doi: 10.1080/08897077.2012.746950.


Background: Co-occurring major depression is prevalent among alcohol-dependent women and is a risk factor for poor treatment outcomes. This uncontrolled pilot study tested the feasibility, acceptability, and initial effects of interpersonal psychotherapy (IPT) for women with co-occurring alcohol dependence and major depression (AD-MD) in an outpatient community addiction treatment program.

Methods: Fourteen female patients with concurrent diagnoses of alcohol dependence and major depression participated. Assessments were conducted at baseline, midtreatment (8 and 16 weeks), posttreatment (24 weeks), and follow-up (32 weeks).

Results: Participants attended a mode of 8 out of 8 possible sessions of IPT in addition to their routine addiction care, and reported high treatment satisfaction on the Client Satisfaction Questionnaire-8. Women's drinking behavior, depressive symptoms, and interpersonal functioning improved significantly over the treatment period and were sustained at follow-up.

Conclusions: These preliminary findings suggest that IPT is a feasible, highly acceptable adjunctive behavioral intervention for AD-MD women.

Publication types

  • Clinical Trial
  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Alcohol Drinking / psychology
  • Alcoholism / complications
  • Alcoholism / psychology*
  • Alcoholism / therapy*
  • Depressive Disorder, Major / complications
  • Depressive Disorder, Major / psychology*
  • Depressive Disorder, Major / therapy*
  • Diagnosis, Dual (Psychiatry)
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Interpersonal Relations
  • Patient Satisfaction
  • Pilot Projects
  • Psychotherapy*