Nerve stimulation for severe depression changes brain function

For nearly a decade, doctors have used implanted electronic stimulators to treat severe depression in people who don’t respond to standard antidepressant treatments. Now, preliminary brain scan studies conducted by School of Medicine researchers are revealing that vagus nerve stimulation brings about changes in brain metabolism weeks or even months before patients begin to feel better.

Washington University opens clinic for treatment-resistant depression

Washington University School of Medicine has opened a clinic for patients with treatment-resistant depression that targets those who haven’t responded to standard therapies. When at least two therapies have been tried, and a patient still hasn’t responded, that patient is said to have treatment-resistant depression, according to clinic director Charles R. Conway, MD.