Heart rate variability and treatment outcome in major depression: A pilot study

Felipe A. Jain, Ian A. Cook, Andrew F. Leuchter, Aimee M. Hunter, Dmitry M. Davydov, Cristina Ottaviani, Molly Tartter, Caroline Crump, David Shapiro

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Variations in heart rate variability (HRV) have been associated with major depressive disorder (MDD), but the relationship of baseline HRV to treatment outcome in MDD is unclear. We conducted a pilot study to examine associations between resting baseline HRV and MDD treatment outcome. We retrospectively tested several parameters of HRV in an MDD treatment study with escitalopram (ESC, N=26) to generate a model of how baseline HRV related to treatment outcome, and cross-validated the model in a separate trial of MDD treatment with Iyengar yoga (IY, N=16). Lower relative power of very low frequency (rVLF) HRV at baseline predicted improvement in depressive symptoms when adjusted for age and gender (R2>.43 and p

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)204-210
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Journal of Psychophysiology
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2014


  • Escitalopram
  • Heart rate variability
  • Major depressive disorder
  • Selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor
  • Very low frequency
  • Yoga

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Neuroscience(all)
  • Physiology (medical)
  • Neuropsychology and Physiological Psychology
  • Medicine(all)


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