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Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS)is a non invasive technique which uses a very weak current to change excitability in targeted regions of the brain. Early studies suggest that it has antidepressant properties. This study will test the safety and efficacy of tDCS as a treatment for depression.
Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) applies a weak direct current across the scalp that can produce sub-threshold changes in the excitability of targeted cortical regions, in a polarity-specific manner. This technique has been used in humans to alter motor and visual cortex excitability, during stimulation, and for a period after the stimulation has ceased. It has therefore been suggested as a possible treatment for depression (Lippold & Redfearn, 1964; Nitsche, 2002). Studies have been launched recently to examine the effect of tDCS in depressed subjects and a sham-controlled pilot study (in USA, in press) has reported promising antidepressant effects with tDCS.
We wish to examine this in an investigation of 20 subjects, and hypothesise that tDCS will have an antidepressant effect and produce no neuropsychological impairment. Subjects will receive anodal DC stimulation or sham stimulation over the left prefrontal cortex in a double-blind, placebo-controlled design over 5 days, and then have daily stimulation up to a maximum of 10 active sessions in total. Outcomes will be formally evaluated by depression rating scales and neuropsychological tests.
Allocation: Randomized, Control: Placebo Control, Endpoint Classification: Safety/Efficacy Study, Intervention Model: Parallel Assignment, Masking: Double-Blind, Primary Purpose: Treatment
Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation
Black Dog Institute Building, School of Psychiatry, University of NSW
New South Wales
The University of New South Wales
Published on BioPortfolio: 2014-08-27T03:47:31-0400
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