Friday, April 12, 2024

New Treatments For Depression And Anxiety

Saint: Hope For New Treatment Of Depression

Investigating Neurobiology and New Treatments for Addiction, Depression and Anxiety

In her garden outside San Francisco, Deirdre Lehman tries to keep her demons at bay. For most of her life, medication and therapy have helped keep her depression under control.

“I’m technically bi-polar,” she said. “You can have episodes of the quiet time where the disease doesn’t appear.”

But when it does appear, for Lehman it’s like tumbling head-first into depression’s deepest abyss.

“I just drop off a cliff,” she said.

Clark, her husband, said one of the scariest episodes came back in 2018: “It wasn’t just depressed it was suicidal, in a matter of hours.”

Deirdre recalled, “I said, ‘Clark, oh my God, the chatter is starting and I can feel it’s coming.’ This negative chatter about, ‘No one’s gonna love me. I’m ugly, I’m a burden. No one would miss me if I killed myself.'”

Correspondent Lee Cowan asked, “That’s what the chatter was telling you?”

“The chatter was telling me this.”

Clark hid all the knives, and all the pills, too.

She said, “You finally told my family, and then as each of them called, I said good-bye. I wanted to die.”

She was referred to Dr. Nolan Williams, the director of Stanford University’s Brain Stimulation Lab in Palo Alto, California.

“This is a brain emergency,” he said, “and we need to meet this with a really significant intervention.”

“We treat it like a brain disease,” Williams said. “We find the spot to stimulate the brain back into not being suicidal, not being depressed.”

“Yeah, that’s right.”

From Ketamine To Esketamine: Proving And Improving

The history of psychopharmacology is unfortunately full of examples of remarkable findings that turn out to be false leads and are not followed through. Not so with the Krystal and Charney findings. Over the two decades since the initial surprising result, numerous careful NIMH-sponsored studies have consistently demonstrated that ketamine rapidly reduces depressive symptoms when given intravenously. Much of this work has been carried out in the NIMH Intramural Research Program on the NIH campus in Bethesda, Maryland, where we support about 600 scientists conducting research on everything from basic neuroscience to clinical trials. After their initial report was published, Dr. Charney joined NIMH as an investigator and recruited Husseini Manji, M.D. and Carlos Zarate, M.D. to build a mood disorders research program in the IRP.

Meanwhile, NIMH-funded scientists around the country, including Dr. Charney, who left NIMH in 2004 to continue his research at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mt. Sinai in New York, carried out additional studies confirming that ketamine was useful in TRD, where it provides relief from depression in about half of patients. Other studies showed that the effects of ketamine last for several days to a few weeks, and that multiple doses can provide continued relief in those who respond.

What Medications Are Used To Treat Anxiety Disorders

When treating anxiety disorders, antidepressants, particularly the SSRIs and some SNRIs ,Ã Ã have been shown to be effective.

Other anti-anxiety drugs include the benzodiazepines, such as as alprazolam , diazepamà , buspirone ,à and lorazepam . These drugs do carry a risk of addiction or tolerance , so they are not as desirable for long-term use. Other possible side effects include drowsiness, poor concentration, and irritability. Some anticonvulsant drugs , some blood pressure medications , and some atypical antipsychotics are also occasionally used “off label” to treat anxiety symptoms or disorders.

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Help Pioneer New Treatments For Depression And Anxiety

Volunteers are needed for two new studies being held by clinical trials company, MAC Clinical Research

Volunteers are being sought to help doctors explore and develop two potential new treatments for both depression and anxiety.

The volunteers are needed for two new studies being held by leading North West clinical trials company, MAC Clinical Research.

According to the World Health Organisation, depression affects more than 300 million people worldwide. The need to develop new treatments for depression and anxiety has grown significantly following COVID-19, with rates of depression in the UK doubling during the pandemic according to recent studies.

As part of the ground-breaking new research, due to take place this summer, MACs experts will test the effects of new study drugs on treating patients with depression who have not had an adequate response to their current antidepressant medication.

The hope from the research is that potential new treatments could be developed, leading to better outcomes for patients and more rapid relief from symptoms.

If you think you might be eligible, there are some simple criteria set out for the two studies. Eligible patients for both studies will receive a comprehensive health screen and study participation will be in collaboration with their treating physician and/or GP.

Side Effects Of Antidepressant Medications

An Overview of the Treatments for Depression

All medications can have side-effects. Some people experience no side-effects. Others may find the side-effects distressing. In most cases, side-effects lessen as treatment continues.

Treatment is usually started at a low dose, to minimize side-effects, and then slowly increased until the ideal dose is found. The ideal dose is one that provides the greatest benefit with minimum side-effects.

If you are experiencing side effects, check the information given to you by your doctor or pharmacist on the specific effects of any drug you have been prescribed. If side-effects are not mild and tolerable, it is best to continue taking your medication as prescribed but let your doctor know as soon as possible. Your doctor may:

  • encourage you to wait a little longer for the side-effects to fade
  • adjust your dose
  • suggest you take the medication at a different time of day
  • prescribe other medications to help control side-effects
  • change your medication
  • stop medication treatment and suggest a different type of treatment approach.

Side-effects vary depending on the type of medication. More information on side-effects is included for each type of types of antidepressant.

You can help to control possible side-effects on your own by:

Do antidepressants increase the risk of suicide?

Before starting treatment, prepare for the possibility of feeling worse before you feel better. Know what supports are available to you and who you can call.

Read Also: How To Relieve Depression During Pregnancy

Beyond Prozac: New Depression Treatments New Hope

Welcome to the 21st-century lab, where hormones, brain pacemakers and magnetic coils can treat and cure depression, even treatment-resistant depression.

We’ve come a long way. Some psychiatrists used to think you could cure depression by removing a patient’s colon or teeth. In the late 1800s, there was a doctor who observed his anxious patient become calm on a bumpy train thereafter treatment consisted of shaking the poor man for greater and greater lengths of time.

In an attempt to cure the ancient malady of melancholia, we have resorted to scads of strategies, some of them plainly stupid or cruel, others, like Prozac , that work. But an estimated 30 percent of depressed patients are what’s called treatment-resistant they don’t respond to pills or talk or even electroshock therapy. The good news is that there are new treatments for depression making their way into the 21st-century world depression treatments that offer hope for the newly diagnosed or for someone who has been suffering without, so far, a cure in sight.

The Gold Standard of Treating Depression

We want to urge you to read our special depression treatment section: “The Gold Standard for Treating Depression.” It’s an in-depth, authoritative examination of the best treatments for depression written by award-winning author, Julie Fast, exclusively for This section includes depression videos interviews with Julie Fast.

Miracle Medications for Depression

“Get Happy” Pacemakers

Mastermind Coach Reveals New Proven Strategies For Overcoming Treatment

Superhuman Mastermind Coaching offers tangible solutions for uncovering the root cause of depression and reframing the mind to allow for true healing

Ive dedicated my career toward helping people overcome their depression and anxiety through my proven methods outlined in this 1/1 mastermind coaching course.

Recommended Reading: Myth And Facts About Depression

Fda Approves New Nasal Spray Medication For Treatment

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today approved Spravato nasal spray, in conjunction with an oral antidepressant, for the treatment of depression in adults who have tried other antidepressant medicines but have not benefited from them . Because of the risk of serious adverse outcomes resulting from sedation and dissociation caused by Spravato administration, and the potential for abuse and misuse of the drug, it is only available through a restricted distribution system, under a Risk Evaluation and Mitigation Strategy .

“There has been a long-standing need for additional effective treatments for treatment-resistant depression, a serious and life-threatening condition,” said Tiffany Farchione, M.D., acting director of the Division of Psychiatry Products in the FDA’s Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. “Controlled clinical trials that studied the safety and efficacy of this drug, along with careful review through the FDAs drug approval process including a robust discussion with our external advisory committees, were important to our decision to approve this treatment. Because of safety concerns, the drug will only be available through a restricted distribution system and it must be administered in a certified medical office where the health care provider can monitor the patient.”

Esketamine is the s-enantiomer of ketamine. Ketamine is a mixture of two enantiomers . This is the first FDA approval of esketamine for any use. The FDA approved ketamine in 1970.

What Else Should You Know About Ketamine

Spreading Awareness About The New Non-Medication Treatment For Depression, Anxiety, OCD & Addiction
  • A much lower dose of ketamine is given for depression compared with the dose necessary for anesthesia.
  • Like opioids, ketamine has addictive properties. Its important to understand this when weighing risks and benefits. If you have a history of substance abuse such as alcohol or drugs its especially important for you and your doctor to consider whether ketamine is a good option for you.
  • When IV ketamine works, people usually respond to it within one to three infusions. If a person has no response at all, further infusions are unlikely to help. Instead, its probably best to try other treatments for depression.
  • People who experience some relief from depression within one to three ketamine treatments are probably likely to extend these positive effects if the treatment is repeated several more times. The subsequent sessions may help prolong the effects of ketamine, rather than achieving further dramatic relief of symptoms. There are no standard guidelines for this. Many studies offer eight treatments initially . After this, patient and doctor decide whether to taper or stop ketamine treatments or continue treatments at longer intervals.

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Going Green Is Good For You

Because wellness is always in bloom

Talk to any gardener and she is likely to tell you how calm or focused she feels after working the land. It turns out having a green thumb impacts more than just your harvest organized gardening, led by a trained horticultural therapist, is being used to treat anxiety, depression, schizophrenia, and PTSD at hospitals, shelters, community gardens, and correctional facilities nationwide. A 2010 Journal of Health Psychology study found the first evidence that gardening can relieve stress: After just 30 minutes, levels of the stress hormone cortisol were reduced among participants.

At GreenHouse17, a 42-bed shelter for victims of intimate-partner abuse in Lexington, Kentucky, survivors can work on a 40-acre farm for a weekly stipend. It gives the space for women to reflect and stop and be quiet and still in a very busy world, says Darlene Thomas, GreenHouse17s executive director. After multiple stays at GreenHouse17, Melissa Keaton, 31, says gardening quieted the negative thoughts that used to keep her up at night. My head was thinking too much about what I did wrong, Keaton says. The garden takes you out of that. Its proof that more than just crops are grown in the garden. Allie Volpe

Selective Serotonin Reuptake Inhibitors

If a GP thinks you’d benefit from taking an antidepressant, you’ll usually be prescribed a modern type called a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor .

Examples of commonly used SSRI antidepressants are paroxetine , fluoxetine and citalopram .

They help increase the level of a natural chemical in your brain called serotonin, which is thought to be a “good mood” chemical.

SSRIs work just as well as older antidepressants and have fewer side effects, although they can cause nausea, headaches, a dry mouth and problems having sex. But these side effects usually improve over time.

Some SSRIs are not suitable for children and young people under 18 years of age. Research shows that the risk of self-harm and suicidal behaviour may increase if they’re taken by under-18s.

Fluoxetine is the only SSRI that can be prescribed for under-18s and, even then, only when a specialist has given the go-ahead.

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Investigating Neurobiology And New Treatments For Addiction Depression And Anxiety

Dr. Addy and his research team study the brain processes that contribute to addiction, depression, and anxiety. In this talk, Dr. Addy will discuss his research on calcium processes within the brains reward system, that may serve as effective therapeutic targets. He will also describe how current FDA approved medications, that impact these brain calcium processes, could be repurposed as novel, effective treatments for addiction, mood disorders, and co-occurring addiction, depression and/ or anxiety.

Watch webinar recording:

Associate Professor of Psychiatry

Scientific Council Member

President and CEO

Jeffrey Borenstein, M.D., serves as the President & CEO of the Brain & Behavior Research Foundation, the largest private funder of mental health research grants. Dr. Borenstein developed the Emmy Award-nominated public television program Healthy Minds, and serves as host of the series. The program, which is broadcast nationwide, focuses on topics in psychiatry in order to educate the public, reduce stigma and offer a message of hope. Dr. Borenstein also serves as Editor-in-Chief of Psychiatric News, the newspaper of the American Psychiatric Association.

Whats The Difference Between Depression And Anxiety

9 Steps To Treat Depression Naturally

Anxiety and depression are distinct mental health disorders. Each has its own set of symptoms.

For example, someone with anxiety may experience excessive fear or worry, while someone with depression may experience persistent feelings of hopelessness.

However, they are often interconnected. Someone with depression can experience anxiety symptoms as part of their mood disorder, and someone with a persistent anxiety disorder can develop depression over time.

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How Does Ketamine Work

Its not entirely clear how ketamine works. Because it exerts an antidepressant effect through a new mechanism, ketamine may be able to help people successfully manage depression when other treatments have not worked.

One likely target for ketamine is NMDA receptors in the brain. By binding to these receptors, ketamine appears to increase the amount of a neurotransmitter called glutamate in the spaces between neurons. Glutamate then activates connections in another receptor, called the AMPA receptor. Together, the initial blockade of NMDA receptors and activation of AMPA receptors lead to the release of other molecules that help neurons communicate with each other along new pathways. Known as synaptogenesis, this process likely affects mood, thought patterns, and cognition.

Ketamine also may influence depression in other ways. For example, it might reduce signals involved in inflammation, which has been linked to mood disorders, or facilitate communication within specific areas in the brain. Most likely, ketamine works in several ways at the same time, many of which are being studied.

New Medications And Faster Results

There’s a long-held idea that depression takes weeks or months to resolve. But new fast-acting treatments have “changed what we think is possible in the field,” Sanacora says.

In 2019, the FDA approved brexanolone . It’s the first drug specifically for postpartum depression, which is a type of major depression. Experts aren’t exactly sure how it works. But it’s a human-made version of a steroid your body makes naturally. It affects your GABA receptors, which help regulate mood.

Brexanolone isn’t as easy to take as other antidepressants. You get it through a vein in your arm at a health care facility over the course of 60 hours. But it can work quickly. Your depression symptoms might start to lift by the end of your treatment.

Another breakthrough drug came out that same year.

Esketamine is a prescription nasal spray. The low-dose psychedelic drug boosts the activity of glutamate in parts of your brain related to mood. Glutamate’s job is to excite cells in the brain and nervous system. Esketamine can trigger new connections in your brain too. You may start to see improvements in your depression within hours or days of using it, Sanacora says.

Esketamine offers lifesaving hope for people with suicidal thoughts and relief for people with treatment-resistant depression. But used alone, symptom relief may only last a couple of weeks. That’s why experts agree you should take rapid-onset drugs alongside traditional treatments.

Recommended Reading: Can I Be Depressed And Not Know Why

Experimental Depression Treatment Is Nearly 80% Effective In Controlled Study

In a double-blind controlled study, high doses of magnetic brain stimulation, given on an accelerated timeline and individually targeted, caused remission in 79% of trial participants with severe depression.

Since receiving an experimental depression treatment at Stanford, Tommy Van Brocklin has been walking Scout for “the sheer joy of it.”Nellie Van Brocklin

A new type of magnetic brain stimulation brought rapid remission to almost 80% of participants with severe depression in a study conducted at the Stanford University School of Medicine.

The treatment, known as Stanford accelerated intelligent neuromodulation therapy or simply Stanford neuromodulation therapy, is an intensive, individualized form of transcranial magnetic stimulation. In the study, remission typically occurred within days and lasted months. The only side effects were temporary fatigue and headaches.

It works well, it works quickly and its noninvasive, said Nolan Williams, MD, an assistant professor of psychiatry and behavioral sciences. It could be a game changer. Williams is the senior author of the study, which was Oct. 29 in the American Journal of Psychiatry.

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