In a trial thought to be the first of its kind researchers from Brazil and the USA looked at the levels of inflammation in patients’ blood as well as the severity of their depression before and after 16 standard (50 minutes) sessions of psychotherapy (plus an extra two for data collection). The result demonstrated a relationship between the levels of markers for inflammation and the severity of symptoms such that after psychotherapy treatment patients were less depressed and their inflammation had reduced. Previous research had looked at the ways that medication and CBT could reduce inflammation but this was the first study to look at the role of psychodynamic psychotherapy and the results are interesting enough to warrant further research.
Silva, G. D. G. d., Wiener, C. D., Barbosa, L. B., Araujo, J. M. G., Molina, M. L., Martin, P. S., Oses, J. P., Jansen, K., Souza, L. D. d. M. & Silva, R. A. d. (2016). Pro-inflammatory cytokines and psychotherapy in depression: Results from a randomised clinical trial. Journal of Psychiatric Research, 75, 57-64.
Reposted with permission from Monumental Health.co.uk