Monday, January 9, 2012

Deep Brain Stimulation May Benefit Bipolar Patients

Individuals with bipolar disorder who do not respond to medications for their depressive episodes might be able to find relief from those episodes via deep brain stimulation, a small pilot study published January 2 in the Archives of General Psychiatry suggests. Seven subjects received single-blind sham stimulation of subcallosal cingulate white matter for four weeks followed by active stimulation for 24 weeks. The subjects experienced a significant decrease in depression and an increase in functioning. At the same time, the treatment was found to be safe and well-tolerated, and none of the subjects experienced hypomanic or manic episodes.

More information about treatment advances for bipolar disorder can be found in two American Psychiatric Publishing books—Advances in Treatment of Bipolar Disorder and Handbook of Diagnosis and Treatment of Bipolar Disorders .

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