Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) in unipolar vs. bipolar depressive disorder

A. R. Brunoni, R. Ferrucci, M. Bortolomasi, M. Vergari, L. Tadini, P. S. Boggio, M. Giacopuzzi, S. Barbieri, A. Priori

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is a non-invasive method for brain stimulation. Although pilot trials have shown that tDCS yields promising results for major depressive disorder (MDD), its efficacy for bipolar depressive disorder (BDD), a condition with high prevalence and poor treatment outcomes, is unknown. In a previous study we explored the effectiveness of tDCS for MDD. Here, we expanded our research, recruiting patients with MDD and BDD. We enrolled 31 hospitalized patients (24 women) aged 30-70. years 17 with MDD and 14 with BDD (n = 14). All patients received stable drug regimens for at least two weeks before enrollment and drug dosages remained unchanged throughout the study. We applied tDCS over the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (anodal electrode on the left and cathodal on the right) using a 2. mA-current for 20. min, twice-daily, for 5 consecutive days. Depression was measured at baseline, after 5 tDCS sessions, one week later, and one month after treatment onset. We used the scales of Beck (BDI) and Hamilton-21 items (HDRS). All patients tolerated treatment well without adverse effects. After the fifth tDCS session, depressive symptoms in both study groups diminished, and the beneficial effect persisted at one week and one month. In conclusion, our preliminary study suggests that tDCS is a promising treatment for patients with MDD and BDD.2.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)96-101
Number of pages6
JournalProgress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry
Volume35
Issue number1
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jan 15 2011

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Keywords

  • Bipolar disorder
  • Clinical trial
  • Major depressive disorder
  • Non-invasive brain stimulation
  • Transcranial direct current stimulation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Biological Psychiatry
  • Pharmacology

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