Tag Archives: depression

GABAergic model of depression vindicated

Brexanolone, a neurosteroid antidepressant, vindicates the GABAergic deficit hypothesis of depression and may foster resilience – free full-text /PMC6544078/ May 2019

This is another recent study supporting the theory of GABA’s effect on depression.

The GABAergic deficit hypothesis of depression states that a deficit of GABAergic transmission in defined neural circuits is causal for depression. 

Conversely, an enhancement of GABA transmission, including that triggered by selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors or ketamine, has antidepressant effects.    Continue reading

Cortical GABAergic Dysfunction in Depression

Cortical GABAergic Dysfunction in Stress and Depression: New Insights for Therapeutic Interventions – free full-text /30914923/Front. Cell. Neurosci., March 2019

This is a recent article with many technical details explaining how GABA is involved in stress, depression, and anxiety.

Major depressive disorder (MDD) is a debilitating illness characterized by neuroanatomical and functional alterations in limbic structures, notably the prefrontal cortex (PFC), that can be precipitated by exposure to chronic stress

For decades, the monoaminergic deficit hypothesis of depression provided the conceptual framework to understand the pathophysiology of MDD.   Continue reading

Pregnenolone for Bipolar Depression

A Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial of Pregnenolone for Bipolar Depression – free full-text /PMC4200497/Jul 2014

Depression in bipolar disorder (BPD) is challenging to treat. Therefore, additional medication options are needed. In the current report, the effect of the neurosteroid pregnenolone on depressive symptoms in BPD was examined.

Pregnenolone was well tolerated. The results suggest that pregnenolone may improve depressive symptoms in patients with BPD and can be safely administered.

That’s an unusually positive note with which to end the abstract, and I think there’s some truth to it – at least for me. After finding multiple articles about how neurosteroids are helpful for depression and anxiety, I started experimenting.  Continue reading

The GABAergic Hypothesis of Depression/Anxiety

The GABAergic Deficit Hypothesis of Major Depressive Disorder – free full-text /PMC3412149/ – Mol Psychiatry. – Apr 2011

This is a very technical article on a newer theory about what “causes” depression and anxiety.

My increasing desperation during bouts of increasing anxiety lately has motivated me to search for alternate routes of treating it (since I cannot have benzodiazepines due to taking opioids). It feels like my depression and anxiety always come together, so any new idea about treating depression gives me hope it could also alleviate my anxiety.

Here we summarize clinical and preclinical evidence supporting a central and causal role of GABAergic deficits in the etiology of depressive disorders. Increasing evidence points to an association between major depressive disorders (MDDs) and diverse types of GABAergic deficits.

Continue reading

Suicidal Thoughts Linked to Musculoskeletal Pain

Suicidal Thoughts Linked to Pain in Those with Rheumatic or Musculoskeletal DiseaseBy Janice Wood July 2019

A new survey highlights the significant impact of rheumatic and musculoskeletal diseases (RMDs) on mental health.

The survey of more than 900 RMD patients revealed that pain had caused one in 10 to have suicidal thoughts in the previous four weeks. Pain also caused 58 percent to feel that everything was unmanageable for them.

This is a feeling I know only too well: the sinking sensation every time I think about how I’m going to get through this life, feeling completely overwhelmed by even trivial tasks, running around in mental circles looking for a way out of an unbearable situation…  Continue reading

SSRIs May Impair Effectiveness of Some Opioids

SSRIs May Impair Effectiveness of Prodrug Opioids For Post-op Pain – Pain Medicine NewsJun, 2019

A multidisciplinary team of researchers from Stanford University and the VA Palo Alto Healthcare System recently published findings that indicate patients taking selective serotonin reuptake inhibitors (ssRIs) and treated with prodrug opioids to manage postsurgical pain may have worse pain outcomes than those prescribed active opioids (PLoS One 2019;14[2]:e0210575).

“An anesthesiologist came to us with information about this relationship that’s showing up in bench labs,” Dr. Hernandez-Boussard told Pain Medicine News, explaining how one of her co-authors was intrigued by an increasing body of research pointing to potentially antagonistic interactions between prodrug opioids and ssRIs affecting the cytochrome enzyme CYP2D6 in the liver (Acad Emerg Med 2014;21[8]:879-885).   Continue reading

Stressed out? Your dog may feel it too

Stressed out? Your dog may feel it too, study suggests – by Jeremy Rehm, washingtonpost.com – June 6, 2019

After reading this, I feel very sorry for my poor little dog. We spend almost all our time together (I take him everywhere with me in the car), so we’re extremely close and affected by each other.

I know that how we really feel cannot be hidden from our dogs, no matter how well our “acting OK” fools other humans, but I didn’t realize the depth and intensity of this invisible effect. Now I have another reason to get upset: my constant stress and worry about getting sufficient pain relief, not to mention the pain itself, is hurting my dog too.

When dog owners go through a stressful period, they’re not alone in feeling the pressure — their dogs feel it too, a new study suggests.   Continue reading

Psychopathological manifestations of joint hypermobility

Psychopathological manifestations of joint hypermobility and joint hypermobility syndrome/ Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, hypermobility type:… – PubMed – NCBI: The link between connective tissue and psychological distress revised. – Mar 2015 – partial repost from Latest EDS Research: March 2015

Having suffered from crippling anxiety in episodes lasting for days to weeks, I started researching, hoping to find some clues for new treatments. Instead, I found numerous studies showing that my anxiety is probably another “symptom” of my EDS and thus “incurable”.

This is just another painful feeling (in addition to physical pain) that I’m doomed to suffer for the rest of my life.

Psychological distress is a known feature of generalized joint hypermobility (gJHM), as well as of its most common syndromic presentation, namely Ehlers-Danlos syndrome, hypermobility type (a.k.a. joint hypermobility syndrome – JHS/EDS-HT), and significantly contributes to the quality of life of affected individuals.

Continue reading

Hormonal Contraception and Depression

Association of Hormonal Contraception With Depression – JAMA Network – Charlotte Wessel Skovlund, MSc1; Lina Steinrud Mørch, PhD1; Lars Vedel Kessing, MD, DMSc2; et al. – November 2016

Question:  Is use of hormonal contraception associated with treatment of depression?

Spoiler alert: the answer is a resounding “yes”.  all the patients who didn’t get antidepressants (which require a pain or depression diagnosis).

Progesterone is in all birth-control pills, yet women seeking contraception are given these pills almost routinely, and never with the warning that they could cause depression.

This could explain why women tend to be more depressed than men.

Findings:  In a nationwide prospective cohort study of more than 1 million women living in Denmark, an increased risk for first use of an antidepressant and first diagnosis of depression was found among users of different types of hormonal contraception, with the highest rates among adolescents.   Continue reading

Your brain on PMS is like your brain on alcohol

Your brain on PMS is like your brain on alcohol and depressants – By Cassie Werber December 21, 2016

Recent research into hormonal contraceptives found a clear link between them and depression.

That’s hardly surprising, the researcher says, when you consider that all hormonal contraceptives contain progesterone, and some are progesterone-only.

How and why progesterone alters moods is understudied, but there’s a growing body of research, based on the results of blood tests and brain scans, conducted by Poromaa and others. One discovery from this research is that progesterone can trigger the small, almond-shaped part of the brain called the amygdala.   Continue reading