A comparison of MEmory Specificity Training (MEST) to education and support (ES) in the treatment of recurrent depression: study protocol for a cluster randomised controlled trial

Tim Dalgleish, Anna Bevan, Anna McKinnon, Lauren Breakwell, Viola Mueller, Isobel Chadwick, Susanne Schweizer, Caitlin Hitchcock, Peter C Watson, Filip Raes, Laura Jobson, Aliza Werner-Seidler

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Abstract

Background: Depression is a debilitating mental health problem that tends to run a chronic, recurrent course. Even when effectively treated, relapse and recurrence rates remain high. Accordingly, interventions need to focus not only on symptom reduction, but also on reducing the risk of relapse by targeting depression-related disturbances that persist into remission. We are addressing this need by investigating the efficacy, acceptability and feasibility of a MEmory Specificity Training (MEST) programme, which directly targets an enduring cognitive marker of depression - reduced autobiographical memory specificity. Promising pilot data suggest that training memory specificity ameliorates this disturbance and reduces depressive symptoms. A larger, controlled trial is now needed to examine the efficacy of MEST. This trial compares MEST to an education and support (ES) group, with an embedded mechanism study.
Original languageEnglish
Article number293
Number of pages9
JournalTrials
Volume15
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes

Cite this

Dalgleish, T., Bevan, A., McKinnon, A., Breakwell, L., Mueller, V., Chadwick, I., Schweizer, S., Hitchcock, C., Watson, P. C., Raes, F., Jobson, L., & Werner-Seidler, A. (2014). A comparison of MEmory Specificity Training (MEST) to education and support (ES) in the treatment of recurrent depression: study protocol for a cluster randomised controlled trial. Trials, 15, [293]. https://doi.org/10.1186/1745-6215-15-293