Key Points

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  • Depression is a common consequence of SCI.
  • Depression post SCI can interfere with function and adaptation.
  • Cognitive behavioural interventions provided in a group setting appear helpful in reducing post-SCI depression and related difficulties.
  • CBT interventions aimed at both caregivers and care receivers may be effective in reducing symptoms of depression post SCI.
  • Computer based CBT may improve symptoms of depression, anxiety and stress post SCI.
  • The benefits of drug treatment for post-SCI depression are largely extrapolated from studies in non-SCI populations.
  • Programs to encourage regular exercise, reduce stress, and improve or maintain health appear to have benefits in reducing reports of depressive symptoms in persons with SCI.
  • Several non-traditional approaches to SCI appear to offer improved health practices and a reduction in reported secondary conditions including depression.