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A negative randomised sham-controlled trial of ventral capsule/ventral striatum stimulation in treatment-resistant depression: an unsuccessful trial or treatment?
  1. Rajamannar Ramasubbu
  1. Department of Psychiatry/Clinical Neurosciences, University of Calgary, Calgary, Alberta, Canada;

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ABSTRACT FROM: Dougherty DD, Rezai AR, Carpenter LL, et al. A randomized sham-controlled trial of deep brain stimulation of the ventral capsule/ventral striatum for chronic treatment-resistant depression. Biol Psychiatry 2014. Published Online First.

What is already known on this topic

The evidence from multiple open-label trials documents the efficacy and safety of Deep brain stimulation (DBS) in the treatment of refractory depression (TRD).1 Nonetheless, randomised sham-control trials are required to determine whether the effect is directly related to active electrical stimulation or to the non-stimulation effects.

Methods of the study

This was a multicentre randomised sham-controlled trial of DBS at the ventral capsule/ventral striatum (VC/VS). Thirty patients with chronic, non-psychotic, unipolar TRD were recruited from five centres that used comparable surgical targeting, in the USA. Patients received active or sham stimulation (1:1) in a double-blinded fashion for 16 weeks, followed by a 24-month open-label phase of active stimulation. During the blinded phase, high-frequency bilateral stimulation with two different fixed pulse …

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  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; internally peer reviewed.

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