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Regional Cerebral Blood Flow Changes after Low-Frequency Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation of the Right Dorsolateral Prefrontal Cortex in Treatment-Resistant DepressionKito S. · Fujita K. · Koga Y.
Department of Neuropsychiatry, Kyorin University School of Medicine, Tokyo, Japan Corresponding Author
Department of Neuropsychiatry
Kyorin University School of Medicine
6-20-2 Shinkawa, Mitaka, Tokyo 181-8611 (Japan)
Tel. +81 422 47 5511, Fax +81 422 45 4697, E-Mail email@example.com
Several studies have proved that low-frequency transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) of the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) showed an antidepressant effect, although its mechanism is still not completely elucidated. The aim of the present study was to clarify the alteration in neuroanatomical function elicited by low-frequency TMS of the right DLPFC in treatment-resistant depression and to detect the difference between responders and nonresponders to TMS. Single-photon emission computed tomography with 99mTc-ethyl cysteinate dimer was performed in 14 right-handed male patients with treatment-resistant unipolar depression before and after low-frequency TMS of the right DLPFC. Five 60-second 1-Hz trains were applied and 12 treatment sessions were administered within a 3-week period (total pulses, 3,600). The Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression was administered and the regional cerebral blood flow (rCBF) was analyzed using statistical parametric mapping (SPM2). After TMS treatment in 14 patients, the score on the Hamilton Rating Scale for Depression decreased significantly, and considerable decreases in rCBF were seen in the bilateral prefrontal, orbitofrontal, anterior insula, right subgenual cingulate, and left parietal cortex, but no significant increase in rCBF occurred. Additionally, as compared with 8 nonresponders, 6 responders showed significant increases in rCBF at baseline in the left hemisphere including the prefrontal and limbic-paralimbic regions. These results suggest that the antidepressant effect of low-frequency TMS of the right DLPFC is associated with a decrease in rCBF in the limbic-paralimbic regions via the ipsilateral subgenual cingulate, and increased rCBF at baseline in the left hemisphere may be involved in the response to low-frequency TMS treatment.
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