Treatment Resistant OCD – Deep Brain Stimulation
OCD or obsessive compulsive disorder might be treatable without medication. A new study on Deep Brain Stimulation DBS has shown to be promising as a new treatment for OCD or Obsessive Compulsive Disorder, especially treatment resistant OCD. DBS sends electrical currents to stimulate parts of the brain responsible for OCD. This article on OCD being treated with DBS caught my attention because we are using a similar therapy to treat depression called Vagus or Vagal Nerve Stimulation. Read the article on Vagal Nerve Stimulation and depression. Vagal Nerve Stimulation requires a surgeon inserts a device similar to a pace maker that contains wires which wrap around the Vagus nerve and repeatedly stimulates the nerve with a rapid minor electric impulse or shock every 5 minutes for 30 seconds. This therapy was originally developed for epilepsy however it was later discovered to relieve patients who also have depression of their depressive symptoms. There are also studies being conducted using DBS to treat depression, and some of these studies claim to have cured some individuals of depression.
The Results of the Study of Treatment Resistant OCD and DBS
50 patients were involved in the study, each patient suffered from severe OCD and treatment resistant OCD. These patients have had positive results for an 8 year period following the study. The study reveals that 73% of the patients reported a 25% reduction in OCD symptoms and these results continued for at least 8 years which shows promise for a long term treatment with DBS. Patients considered for the study were the most severely affected with the disorder and had to have suffered from OCD for at least 5 years. Between the studies in genetics and now electro-brain and nerve stimulation, I believe psychiatry is on the edge of the next generation of scientific breakthroughs for treating illnesses of the brain. As a Scottsdale Psychiatrist I love treating OCD. Read about DBS and Treatment Resistant OCD.