Shock Therapy For Depression

With major depression may finally have a solution for a disease that can literally live weaken. Depression is now the kind of attention, cancer and AIDS for years, though no doubt the number of people over the years in question. But even with this new attention, it is neither curable nor necessarily easy to live with it.

A new idea, which was recently presented to the American Association of Neurological Surgeons Annual Scientific Conference hopes to contribute to the offer with depression, which often untouchable by the usual methods.

It's something like a pacemaker for the heart, but this time specially modified for your brain. This new shock to the brain and regulates mood circuits. The hope is that fill this deep depression.

"Depression is a physiological disorder caused, and basically we are regulating the abnormal signals in the brain, depression," says Dr. Ali Rezai, director of the Center for Neurological Restoration at the Cleveland Clinic in Ohio.

Rezai was one of several authors of scientific research from Butler Hospital / Brown Medical School, Massachusetts General Hospital and Harvard Medical School.

Deep brain stimulation (DBS) is not a new technology, and as a treatment for Parkinson's disease, multiple sclerosis, tremor and other tremor disorders used. And unlike electric shock therapy, DBS is more selective and therefore not produce convulsions or the same memory and cognitive side effects, electric shock therapy is known.

The process requires neurosurgeons on the small device in a specific node of the cerebral cortex, which is probably defective implant. From there, the son are in a tunnel behind the ear and chest, where the sources of power supply will electrode emits electrical impulses.

The theory is that this stimulation to block abnormal brain waves, and consequently little obsesses ions, moods and depressive symptoms associated with these psychiatric disorders.

"This research reinforces previous findings that DBS holds promise and hope for selected patients suffering from severe depression and treatment resistant," said Rezai. "I think we learn more about this relatively new technology to improve efficiency further."

The researchers are quick to point out that this is not a panacea for all people with mild depression or occasionally. This process is intended for patients with major depression who have failed all other methods, including psychotherapy, drug therapy and electroconvulsive therapy.

These extreme methods are of crucial importance for the treatment of diseases such as depression, when one considers that the suicide rate is for those who are involved in less than 15%. And without playing the numbers game, the suicide rate is comparable to alcohol abusers (20%) or drug (29%).

Although DBS may be associated with a cerebral hemorrhage and a low risk of leakage of cerebrospinal fluid, "In this group of patients, we saw no significant side effects," said Rezai. Even surgeons who lean towards conservatism when it comes to surgery to endorse psychiatric DBS as a good thing.

"This study opens the door to the use of DBS for all types of psychiatric disorders, including even Alzheimer's disease and morbid obesity," said Dr. Michel debt, spokesman of the American Association of Neurological Surgeons and president of the American Society for Stereotactic and functional neurosurgery. But he stressed that all studies should be treated in patients with psychiatric disorders with particular care.

Of course, if today we do not hear about these effects in the real world in a few years the road (for those who suffer from depression). A clinical study of this year, and other companies such as Saint-Jewish Medical Inc. and Cyberonics Inc. is also testing the technology.