Treatment-resistant late-life depression: challenges and perspectives

  • The current Review article provides a narrative review about the neurobiological underpinnings and treatment of treatment resistant late-life depression (TRLLD). The manuscript focuses on therapeutic targets of late-life depression, which include pharmacological, psychological, biophysical and exercise treatment approaches. Therefore, we summarize available evidences on that kind of therapies for patients suffering from late-life depression. The search for evidences of therapeutic options of late-life depression were done using searching websites as “pubmed”, and using the searching terms “depression”, “late-life depression”, “treatment”, “biophysical therapy”, “exercise therapy”, “pharmacological therapy” and “psychological therapy”. To the end, we summarize and discuss current data, providing some directions for further research. Treatment recommendations for elderly depressive patients favour a multimodal approach, containing psychological, pharmacological and secondary biophysical therapeutic options. Particularly, a combination of psychotherapy and antidepressant medication reflects the best therapeutic option. However, mostly accepted and used is the pharmacological treatment although evidence suggests that the drug therapy is not as effective as it is in younger depressive patients. Further studies employing larger samples and longer follow-up periods are necessary and may focus on comparability of study designs and involve novel approaches to establish the validity and reliability of multimodal treatment programs.

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Author:Christian Knöchel, Gilberto Sousa Alves, Benedikt Friedrichs, Barbara Schneider, Anna Schmidt-Rechau, Sofia Wenzlera, Angelina Schneider, David Prvulovic, André Férrer Carvalho, Viola Oertel-KnöchelGND
Pubmed Id:
Parent Title (English):Current Neuropharmacology
Publisher:Bentham Science Publ.
Place of publication:Hilversum [u.a.]
Document Type:Article
Year of Completion:2015
Year of first Publication:2015
Publishing Institution:Universitätsbibliothek Johann Christian Senckenberg
Release Date:2016/07/18
Tag:antidepressants; electroconvulsive therapy; late-life depression; psychotherapy; review; treatment-resistant
Page Number:15
First Page:577
Last Page:591
This is an open access article licensed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-Non-Commercial 4.0 International Public License (CC BY-NC 4.0)(, which permits unrestricted, non-commercial use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the work is properly cited.
Institutes:Medizin / Medizin
Dewey Decimal Classification:6 Technik, Medizin, angewandte Wissenschaften / 61 Medizin und Gesundheit / 610 Medizin und Gesundheit
Licence (English):License LogoCreative Commons - Namensnennung-Nicht kommerziell 4.0