Interpersonal Psychotherapy for Depressed Adolescents

Second Edition

Laura H. Mufson, Kristen Pollack Dorta, Donna Moreau, and Myrna M. Weissman

April 22, 2004
ISBN 9781593850425
Price: $85.00
315 Pages
Size: 6" x 9"
January 24, 2011
ISBN 9781609182267
Price: $35.00
315 Pages
Size: 6" x 9"

Grounded in extensive research and clinical experience, this manual provides a complete guide to interpersonal psychotherapy for depressed adolescents (IPT-A). IPT-A is an evidence-based brief intervention designed to meet the specific developmental needs of teenagers. Clinicians learn how to educate adolescents and their families about depression, work with associated relationship difficulties, and help clients manage their symptoms while developing more effective communication and interpersonal problem-solving skills. The book includes illustrative clinical vignettes, an extended case example, and information on the model's conceptual and empirical underpinnings. Helpful session checklists and sample assessment tools are featured in the appendices.

“IPT is a therapeutic approach that is highly amenable to [a] social worker's ecosystemic and family orientation. For social work practitioners and educators seeking an EST for their practice, or for training Master's level Social Work students, IPT is a good entree to a highly rigorous Evidence Based Practice....[A] strong resource for clinicians and educators....Interpersonal Psychotherapy for Depressed Adolescents...offers a good starting point for social workers in increasing their use of ESTs.”

Child and Adolescent Social Work Journal

“In addition to providing a revised manual that incorporates evidence-based practices and many very helpful clinical examples, the authors provide a concise but excellent general overview of other current treatment practices for depressed adolescents....I found this book to be well-organized and easy (actually fun) to read. I found the clinical examples and tips to be useful in general terms for working with adults as well as adolescents, especially in community settings....The brief, focal nature of the therapy is very adaptable for work with adolescents in community settings.”

Community Mental Health Journal

“This much needed second edition by experts in the field of interpersonal psychotherapy delivers hope and provides an evidence-based approach for the treatment of adolescent depression....presents an excellent treatment alternative that a clinician can use and expect quick results since it is time limited. It represents a welcome change at a time that is ridden with antidepressant medication controversy. The last section of the book has extremely useful tips for challenging cases. This book is a must have for all clinicians treating adolescents....a job well done. Weighted Numerical Score: 90 - 4 Stars!”

Doody's Review Service

“The book is clear, insightful, and evidence-based....Any individual working with adolescents would benefit from reading this book, as it is directly applicable to clinical practice....IPT is an evidence-based therapy and highly applicable to the adolescent population. I would encourage anyone working with adolescents to read this book and keep it readily available for reference in their clinical practice.”

Archives of Women's Mental Health

“Interpersonal Psychotherapy (IPT) is one of the most promising interventions for the treatment of depression, and one of the few that has empirical data to support its efficacy with adolescents. In this revised second edition, Mufson and colleagues provide an informative and succinct description of the steps involved in using IPT to treat depressed adolescents. Rich in theory and clinical detail, this is a valuable resource for anyone working with younger patients.”

—Steven D. Hollon, PhD, Department of Psychology, Vanderbilt University

“Since the publication of the first edition of this book, IPT for Adolescents (IPT-A) has matured. Well-conducted research studies have shown this to be a powerful treatment for depressed teenagers who are experiencing psychosocial complications. In this second edition, the authors share an extra decade of experience, present and discuss the research findings, and offer valuable advice on how the treatment can be applied to very young patients. This book is a 'must' for psychotherapists of any orientation who work with depressed teenagers.”

—David Shaffer, MD, Department of Psychiatry, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons

“In this expanded second edition, the authors build a compelling case for the value of interpersonal psychotherapy for depressed adolescents (IPT-A). Their comprehensive, theory-driven, evidence-based intervention manual is developmentally informed, innovative, and clinically relevant. The case material illuminates the various strategies and techniques associated with IPT-A and effective ways to implement the intervention approach. I highly recommend this book for trainees and experienced mental health professionals invested in providing quality, interpersonally oriented interventions for depressed youth.”

—Nadine J. Kaslow, PhD, ABPP, Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Emory University School of Medicine

“The second edition of Interpersonal Psychotherapy for Depressed Adolescents is an impressive guide for perplexed clinicians working with adolescents, who are bombarded with a plethora of untested treatment recommendations from every discipline. This book presents one of the few evidence-based, controlled studies of interventions for depressed teenagers. IPT-A is based on the premise that, regardless of the underlying cause, depression is a medical illness whose course is strongly intertwined with the patient's dysfunctional interpersonal relationships and affectional bonds, as described earlier by Sullivan and Bowlby. The authors present many vignettes from their clinical work, as well as an overview of recent community-based studies demonstrating the effectiveness of IPT-A in school-based clinics. Techniques of role-play and communication analysis in a time-limited therapy are offered, replete with case illustrations. This book will be invaluable for all mental health practitioners who work with adolescents in individual and community settings.”

—Clarice J. Kestenbaum, MD, Department of Psychiatry, Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons

Table of Contents

I. Overview

1. The Nature of Depression in Adolescents

2. Current Psychosocial Treatments for Adolescent Depression

3. The Origins and Development of Interpersonal Psychotherapy for Depression

II. Application of Interpersonal Psychotherapy for Depressed Adolescents

4. Diagnosis of Depression and Suitability of Interpersonal Psychotherapy for the Adolescent

5. Conducting Session 1 in IPT-A

6. Initiating the Interpersonal Interview

7. Selecting the Problem Area and Making the Treatment Contract

8. The Middle Phase of IPT-A

9. Therapeutic Techniques

10. Grief

11. Interpersonal Role Disputes

12. Interpersonal Role Transitions

13. Interpersonal Deficits

14. Termination Phase

III. Special Issues in Treating Adolescents

15. Clinical Issues in the Therapist–Patient Relationship

16. Special Clinical Situations

17. Crisis Management

18. The Use of Medication in Conjunction with IPT-A

19. Current and Future Research in IPT-A

20. A Comprehensive Description of an IPT-A Case

Appendix A. Closeness Circle

Appendix B. Interpersonal Inventory: How to Query about Relationships

Appendix C. Session Checklist for Interpersonal Psychotherapy for Depressed Adolescents

About the Authors

Laura H. Mufson, PhD, is Director of the Department of Clinical Psychology at the New York State Psychiatric Institute and Associate Professor of Clinical Psychology in Psychiatry at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons. Dr. Mufson was the first to adapt interpersonal psychotherapy (IPT) for adolescents and has been conducting research on interpersonal psychotherapy for depressed adolescents for over a decade. She travels extensively, training clinicians in treatment techniques for IPT.

Kristen Pollack Dorta, PhD, is a clinical psychologist currently in private practice. Dr. Dorta has been instrumental in the implementation of interpersonal psychotherapy for depressed adolescents in school-based mental health clinics and the training of school-based clinicians.

Donna Moreau, MD, is in private practice in New York City. Previously she was Clinical Associate Professor of Psychiatry at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons and Director of the Children's Anxiety and Depression Clinic at Children's Hospital of New York-Presbyterian Hospital.

Myrna M. Weissman, PhD, one of the originators of interpersonal psychotherapy, is Professor of Psychiatry and Epidemiology at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons and the Joseph L. Mailman School of Public Health. She is also Director of the Division of Clinical and Genetic Epidemiology at the New York State Psychiatric Institute and has published extensively on interpersonal psychotherapy, including coauthoring (with John C. Markowitz and Gerald L. Klerman) A Comprehensive Guide to Interpersonal Psychotherapy.


Mental health professionals who work with adolescents, including clinical psychologists, clinical social workers, counselors, and psychiatrists.

Course Use

May serve as a text in graduate-level courses and psychiatric residency programs.
Previous editions published by Guilford:

First Edition, © 1993
ISBN: 9780898626865
New to this edition: