Intermittent theta-burst stimulation in depression


Modulation of the prefrontal blood oxygenation response to intermittent theta-burst stimulation in depression: A sham-controlled study with functional near-infrared spectroscopy.

OBJECTIVE: To better understand the neural mechanisms behind the effect of intermittent theta-burst stimulation (iTBS), we investigated how the prefrontal blood oxygenation response measured by changes in oxygenated haemoglobin (oxy-Hb) was modulated during a sham-controlled iTBS treatment course, and whether this was related to depressive symptom change.
METHODS: In this randomised, double-blind study, patients with ongoing treatment-resistant depression received either active (n = 18) or sham (n = 21) iTBS over the dorsomedial prefrontal cortex for ten to fifteen days with two sessions daily. Event-related functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) was measured during each iTBS train, and resting-state oxy-Hb was compared before and after each iTBS session at the first, fifth, and last treatment day.
RESULTS: Patients receiving active iTBS had an increase of the event-related oxy-Hb response compared to the sham group on the fifth (bilateral prefrontal cortices p < .001) and last (left prefrontal p = .007, right prefrontal p = .025) treatment day. Resting-state analysis showed suppressed oxy-Hb change in active iTBS compared to sham iTBS on the last treatment day (p = .024). Oxy-Hb change was unrelated to depressive symptom change (p = .474).
CONCLUSIONS: This study describes a modulation of the blood oxygenation response over the prefrontal cortex that was built up during the course of active iTBS treatment in depression.

PMID: 32640854 [PubMed – as supplied by publisher]

World J Biol Psychiatry. 2020 Jul 08;:1-10

Authors: Struckmann W, Persson J, Weigl W, Gingnell M, Bodén R




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