Karp and Frank (1995) – Biological

Karp, J. and Frank, E. (1995) ‘Combination therapy and the depressed woman’, Depression 3, 91–8)



This is the first study we will be looking at from the ‘Treatments of Dysfunctional Behaviour’ section of ‘Dysfunctional Behaviour’, as part of your OCR A2 Health and Clinical Psychology course. It is further categorised into ‘Biological.


Karp and Frank (1995) – reviewed previous studies of drug-based and psychology-based therapies to see if a combination of them was better than drug-based therapies alone.


To compare drug treatments and non-drug treatments for depression.

Method and Design

A review article of previous research into the effectiveness of single treatments and combined drug and psychological treatments of depression.

The reviewed research concentrated on women diagnosed with depression.


Depression was analysed using a variety of depression inventories, and patients were tested prior to treatment, after treatment and in some cases after a period of time as a follow up. Some health practitioner assessments of symptoms were also used in some of the research.


Many studies found that adding psychological treatments to drug therapy did not increase the effectiveness of the drug therapy


The evidence doesn’t show any better outcomes for patients offered combined therapy as opposed to only drug therapy, showing the effectiveness of drug therapy on depression.

Karp and Frank (1995) Evaluation

+ Usefulness – the research is useful because it suggests that adding psychological therapy to the therapy regime of a patient being treated by drugs is no more effective than just the drugs. However, the research does not show if either drug-based or psychological-based therapies are more effective.

– Gynocentric – the results may not be easily generalisable to a male population.

– Secondary sources are not necessarily free from bias and other issues and those issues may have been translated to this piece of research.


Karp, J. and Frank, E. (1995) ‘Combination therapy and the depressed woman’, Depression 3, 91–8)

Further Reading

OCR A2 Psychology Student Unit Guide New Edition: Unit G543 Health and Clinical Psychology (Student Unit Guides)

Psych Yogi’s Top Ten Psychology Revision Tips for the A* Student

Article Name
Karp and Frank (1995) - Biological
Treatments of Dysfunctional Behaviour' section of 'Dysfunctional Behaviour', as part of your OCR A2 Health and Clinical Psychology course. revise 'Biological.'