BrainStimulation: electrical brain stimulation alleviates anxiety and depression in the elderly

April 22, 2024  15:29

Researchers from the University of Florida in the USA have found that non-invasive current stimulation of the brain alleviates symptoms of depression and anxiety in elderly people. The results of the scientific work are published in the journal Brain Stimulation.

The study involved 400 older adults with symptoms of anxiety and depressive disorders. After collecting information about their health status and level of cognitive ability, they were divided into two groups. Participants from the first group were subjected to non-invasive stimulation of the brain with weak electric current using special devices for 12 weeks. This treatment method was called transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS). Subjects from the second group were given a placebo version of tDCS.

The results showed that after the course of current stimulation the symptoms of anxiety and depression in the participants from the first group became less expressed compared to those in the placebo group. This positive effect was confirmed by the data of cognitive and functional tests, as well as the results of neuroimaging of the volunteers' brains.

It is noted that the most significant mental health improvements were demonstrated by patients with initially severe depression and anxiety. The scientists added that in participants who experienced moderate to severe anxiety (or anxiety associated with stressful situations or events), the effect of the treatment persisted for one year after the stimulation was stopped.

Follow Medicine on Facebook and Twitter

  • Video
  • Event calendar
  • Archive