Thin evidence on non-drug strategies for treatment-resistant depression
Research Activities, December 2011, No. 376
A new Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) research review has found there is insufficient evidence to evaluate whether non-pharmacologic treatments are effective for treatment-resistant depression. The Effective Health Care Program review summarizes evidence on the effectiveness and efficacy of four non-pharmacologic treatments: electroconvulsive therapy, repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation, vagus nerve stimulation, and cognitive behavioral therapy or interpersonal psychotherapy. Limited evidence suggests that electroconvulsive therapy produced better outcomes than pharmacotherapy. Given that treatment-resistant depression research is in its infancy, the comparison of potential interventions is hampered by the variability of treatment-resistant depression definitions.
These findings and future research needs are summarized in the review, Non-pharmacologic Interventions for Treatment-Resistant Depression in Adults.
You can read and download the full review and other publications from AHRQ's Effective Health Care Program Web site.