Clinical effectiveness of non-TMS neurostimulation in depression: Clinical trials from 2010 to 2020

Zugliani et al, 2021. Progress in Neuro-Psychopharmacology and Biological Psychiatry.

  • Systematic review of non-TMS neurostimulation clinical trials for MDD between 2010 and 2020 in MEDLINE database through PubMed, the Cochrane Collaboration’s Clinical Trials Register (CENTRAL), PsycINFO, and Thomson Reuters’s Web of Science.
  • Randomized controlled trials demonstrated the efficacy of tDCS in five of seven trials.
  • tDCS augmented with sertraline, fluoxetine, citalopram, and escitalopram was superior to placebo and to tDCS only.
  • tDCS with a duration of 4 or more weeks may be effective in women diagnosed with MDD in the perinatal period.
  • 10 Hz-tACS was more effective in improving depressive symptoms after 2 weeks compared to 40 Hz-tACS and to sham.
  • DBS, EpCS, MST, TNS, and taVNS are well tolerated and may improve the course of illness in patients with TRD.


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