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Chicago, Illinois 60612


This study will develop and evaluate the effectiveness of a technology-assisted behavioral intervention, consisting of Internet-based cognitive behavioral therapy combined with telephone and email support, in reducing depressive symptoms and improving treatment adherence in primary care patients with major depressive disorder.

Study summary:

Major depressive disorder (MDD) is a common mental disorder, with up to 10.3% of the population experiencing the disorder in a given 12-month period. Symptoms of MDD include feelings of anxiety, guilt, or hopelessness; irregular sleep and appetite patterns; lethargy; excessive irritability and restlessness; inability to concentrate; and lack of enjoyment in previously enjoyed activities. Fortunately, MDD is treatable with forms of psychotherapy and/or antidepressant medications. Several studies have found that when given a choice, about two-thirds of depressed patients prefer psychotherapy treatment over antidepressant medication. Although psychotherapy treatments are both effective and desirable, a variety of barriers exist to initiating and sustaining psychotherapy. Only about 20% of all patients referred for psychotherapy treatments ever follow up. Of those who do initiate psychotherapy, nearly half drop out before completing treatment. Delivering an intervention through telecommunication technologies, such as the telephone and Internet, has the potential to overcome many of the barriers to existing treatments for depression. For example, telephone- and Web-based interventions can reduce cost, extend specialized treatment over broad geographic areas, and permit considerable flexibility in scheduling of treatment components. Technology-assisted Behavioral Intervention(TABI) is a specific form of a telecommunication behavioral intervention that incorporates Web-based Internet, e-mail, and telephone intervention. Further study is needed to determine the effectiveness of TABI in reducing depressive symptoms and attrition rates in people with MDD. This pilot study will first develop TABI, which will consist of Internet-based cognitive behavioral therapy (I-CBT) accompanied by telephone and e-mail support. The study will then compare the effectiveness of TABI with the effectiveness of I-CBT alone and treatment as usual (TAU) in reducing depressive symptoms and improving treatment adherence in primary care patients with MDD. Participation in the treatment phase of this study will last 12 weeks. All participants will first undergo initial assessments that will include a telephone interview and a series of questionnaires about mood. Eligible participants will then be assigned randomly to receive TABI, I-CBT alone, or TAU. Participants assigned to TABI and I-CBT will both undergo 12 weeks of a Web-based Internet intervention consisting of modules to help them learn skills to manage their moods. Participants assigned to TAU will receive standard treatment from their primary care physicians and will be able to choose between TABI and I-CBT treatment options after a 6-week wait-list period.


Inclusion Criteria: - Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders-IV diagnosis of MDD as assessed using the Mini Mental State Exam (MINI) - Has a telephone, email account, computer, and broadband access to the Internet - Able to navigate the Internet - Able to speak and read English Exclusion Criteria: - Hearing or voice impairment - Visual impairment that would prevent use of the workbook and completion of assessment materials - Meets criteria for dementia - Diagnosed with a psychotic disorder, bipolar disorder, dissociative disorder, current substance abuse, or other diagnosis for which participation in a clinical trial of psychotherapy may be either inappropriate or dangerous - Currently receiving individual psychotherapy or planning to receive psychotherapy during the 12-week treatment phase of the study - Planning to be out of town or unavailable for treatment for 4 weeks or more during the scheduled treatment time - Exhibits severe suicidality, including ideation, plan, and intent



Primary Contact:

Principal Investigator
David C. Mohr, PhD
Northwestern University

Backup Contact:


Location Contact:

Chicago, Illinois 60612
United States

There is no listed contact information for this specific location.

Site Status: N/A

Data Source: ClinicalTrials.gov

Date Processed: October 09, 2019

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