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ADepT for treatment of complex depression

  • Research type

    Research Study

  • Full title

    A case series evaluation of Augmented Depression Therapy (ADepT) for the treatment of complex depression



  • Contact name

    Barney Dunn

  • Contact email

  • Sponsor organisation

    University of Exeter

  • Duration of Study in the UK

    2 years, 0 months, 1 days

  • Research summary

    Depression is common, causes significant distress, and makes it hard to have a sense of wellbeing and to function fully in everyday life. Current talking treatments do not work for everyone and there is a need to develop and evaluate new approaches, particularly for individuals suffering from more complex depression linked to difficult experiences in early life (complex trauma). People living with depression experience more frequent and intense negative emotions and less frequent and intense positive emotions, both of which need to change if people are to fully recover. Current talking treatments are useful in repairing negative emotions but are less good at re-building positive emotions. Augmented Depression Therapy (ADepT) has been co-designed with people with lived experience of depression with equal focus on building positive emotions and reducing negative emotions. Previous work has found that ADepT successfully reduces negative emotions and builds positive emotions in adults with depression, leading to marked reductions in the symptoms of depression as well as large increases in wellbeing. This research will preliminarily evaluate if ADepT can also help those with more complex depression (characterised by depression with difficulties in regulating emotions and relationships, linked to exposure to difficult early life experiences and often associated with personality difficulties). Up to thirty adults suffering from complex depression will be offered ADepT in two services services, one running in Devon and one running in Essex. We will evaluate if it is effective using a ‘case series’ methodology. We will track changes in depression and anxiety symptoms and wellbeing in the weeks before, during and after treatment. We will also invite people who received ADepT and the therapists who delivered ADepT to take part in an interview to discuss their experiences of the treatment.

  • REC name

    East Midlands - Derby Research Ethics Committee

  • REC reference


  • Date of REC Opinion

    10 Oct 2022

  • REC opinion

    Favourable Opinion

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