Combining medication and therapy

  • Many people do well with either counseling or medication treatment.
  • Combined medication and therapy may be more effective than either treatment alone in some situations.
  • It is not known whether combined treatment is more effective in the long term if the medicine is stopped.
  • Discuss the advantages and disadvantages of the treatment options, including combined treatment, with your health care provider to decide what approach is right for you.


Bockting, C. L. H., Spinhoven, P., Wouters, L. F., Koeter, M. W. J., & Schene, A. H. (2009). Long-term effects of preventive cognitive therapy in recurrent depression: A 5.5-year follow-up study. Journal of Clinical Psychiatry, 70(12), 1621-1628.

Cuijpers, P., van Straten, A., Hollon, S.D., & Andersson, G.  (2010).  The contribution of active medication to combined treatments of psychotherapy and pharmacotherapy for adult depression: A meta-analysis.  Acta Psychiatrica Scandinavica, 121, 415-423.

Otto, M. W., Smits, J. A. J., & Reese, H. E. (2005). Combined psychotherapy and pharmacotherapy for mood and anxiety disorders in adults: Review and analysis. Clinical Psychology: Science and Practice, 12(1), 72-86.

Pampallona, S., Bollini, P., Tibaldi, G., Kupelnick, B., & Munizza, C. (2004). Combined pharmacotherapy and psychological treatment for depression: a systematic review. Archives of General Psychiatry, 61(7), 714-9.

Please See:

How long does it take for the medicine to work?

How long should you keep taking the medicine?

What happens when the medicine is gradually reduced and eventually stopped?

Side effects

Cost of medication