Cognitive Therapy for Depressive Symptoms in Hospitalized Patients with Heart Failure.

  • Dekker, Rebecca (PI)

Grants and Contracts Details


This Mentored Patient-Oriented Research Career Development Award will enhance my ability to achieve my long-term career goal of becoming an independent cardiovascular nurse researcher with expertise in testing psychological interventions to improve biobehavioral outcomes of patients with heart failure (HF). One-third of hospitalized patients with HF experience major depressive disorder, and up to half of patients experience depressive symptoms. Patients with HF and depressive symptoms have worse health-related quality of life and are twice as likely to be rehospitalized or die; thus there is a critical need to test interventions for the treatment of depressive symptoms in this population. In this project, I will receive formal training and mentorship in cognitive therapy and the conduct of clinical trials. I will use the skills and competencies I gain to complete the proposed randomized, controlled pilot study, which will test the feasibility and efficacy of nurse-delivered cognitive therapy for depressive symptoms in patients who are hospitalized with HF. The intervention is an innovative, streamlined approach to cognitive therapy consisting of one brief 30-minute session initiated in-person during hospitalization and four 30-minute sessions delivered via phone after discharge. A total of 36 patients with HF who are hospitalized and experiencing moderate to severe depressive symptoms will be randomized to receive either the cognitive therapy intervention or usual care. Data demonstrating feasibility and efficacy of this intervention will be used to develop an R01 application to conduct a larger randomized controlled trial. This study will fill an important gap in the evidence base for depression treatment in patients with HF by demonstrating the feasibility and efficacy of a nurse-delivered, cognitive therapy intervention for hospitalized patients with HF. This contribution is significant because interventions designed to treat depressive symptoms may decrease the risk of hospital readmission and improve health-related quality of life among patients with HF who have depressive symptoms.
Effective start/end date4/1/126/30/15


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