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MUSC Research Offers Hope for Those Resistant to Depression,Treatment

ple with major depression relapse frequently, often despite numerous other treatment trials. More than 40 percent of patients experience a recurrence after two years and more than 60 percent experience recurrence after five years. Eighty to 90 percent of those patients having experienced two or more episodes of depression will have additional episodes. Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) is considered by many psychiatrists as the most effective acute intervention for TRD. However, the majority of TRD patients relapse during the first year following response to ECT. This study shows that VNS Therapy is an effective long-term treatment option for some of these patients.

The FDA approved VNS Therapy as an adjunctive long-term treatment of chronic or recurrent depression for patients 18 years of age or older who are experiencing a major depressive episode and have not had an adequate response to four or more adequate antidepressant treatments. VNS Therapy is also FDA- approved as an adjunctive therapy used to reduce the frequency of seizures in adults and adolescents over 12 years of age with partial onset seizures that are refractory to antiepileptic medications. In addition to treatment- resistant depression and pharmacoresistant epilepsy indications, VNS Therapy is at various stages of research as potential treatments for anxiety disorders, Alzheimer's disease, bulimia, chronic headache/migraine and morbid obesity.

CONTACT: Tim Gehret of Medical University of South Carolina,+1-843-792-2626

Web site: http://www.musc.edu/

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