In Brief: CBT Effective for Menopausal Symptoms, Including Depression

By | August 25, 2019

Up to 80% of women experience symptoms as they transition into the menopause, including vasomotor symptoms, sleep disturbance, and depressive symptoms.  While hormone replacement therapy and certain medications may be helpful, these interventions may have side effects.  

In a recent study, 71 peri- or postmenopausal women who were seeking treatment for menopausal symptoms, including vasomotor symptoms and at least mild depressive symptoms, were randomly assigned to cognitive behavioral therapy for menopause (CBT-Meno; n = 37; 48.6% also taking psychoactive medication) or to a waitlist (n = 34; 35.3% taking psychoactive medication) for 12 weeks.

Compared to women assigned to a waitlist, women receiving CBT-Meno experienced in greater improvements in vasomotor symptom interference, as well as a greater improvement in depressive symptoms, sleep disturbance, and sexual concerns.

Ruta Nonacs, MD PhD

Cognitive behavioral therapy improves hot flashes, depression in menopause (Healio Psychiatry)

Green SM, Donegan E, Frey BN, Fedorkow DM, Key BL, Streiner DL, McCabe RE.  Cognitive behavior therapy for menopausal symptoms (CBT-Meno): a randomized controlled trial.   Menopause. 2019 May 15. 

MGH Center for Women's Mental Health

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