The Effect of Spiritual Intervention on Postmenopausal Depression in Women Referred to Urban Healthcare Centers in Isfahan: A Double-Blind Clinical Trial


1 1Community Health Department, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, IR Iran

2 2Community Health Department, Nursing and Midwifery Faculty, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, IR Iran

3 3Medical-Surgical Department, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, IR Iran

4 4Science Education Department, Isfahan University of Medical Sciences, Isfahan, IR Iran



Background Depression is not only common after menopause, but also affects postmenopausal women more than other women. Some studies show the positive effects of spiritual intervention on postmenopausal women and depressed patients. However, there is inadequate experimental data for supporting the effectiveness of such interventions. Objectives This study investigated the effect of a spiritual intervention on postmenopausal depression in women referred to urban healthcare centers in Isfahan, Iran. Patients and Methods A randomized controlled clinical trial was conducted on postmenopausal women referred to the healthcare centers of Isfahan. Sixty-four women with postmenopausal depression were assigned randomly into an experimental group (n = 32) and a control group (n = 32). The experimental group received eight sessions of spiritual intervention while the control group received two sessions of training on healthy diet for postmenopausal women. All subjects in the experimental group and the control group responded to the Beck’s depression inventory at the start of the study, at the end of the fourth week, and a month after the last educational session. In addition to descriptive statistics, the chi-square test, independent samples t-test and repeated measures analysis of variance were used to analyze the data. Results Before the intervention, the study groups did not differ significantly in terms of mean depression scores (20.76 ± 4.61 vs. 19.58 ± 5.27, P = 0.33). However, immediately after intervention and after one month, the mean depression scores of 11.01 ± 7.85 and 11.21 ± 9.23 in the experimental group were significantly lower than the control group (19.22 ± 4.94 and 19.34 ± 4.92, respectively) (P = 0.001). In repeated measures analysis of variance, Mauchly’s test of sphericity was not significant (P = 0.672), and in the test of within-subjects effects, a significant interaction was found between the spiritual intervention and time. Conclusions Spiritual intervention effectively could reduce the severity of postmenopausal depression. Considering the high prevalence of depression in postmenopausal women and the effectiveness, simplicity, and affordability of spiritual intervention, using such interventions in postmenopausal women is recommended.