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Review
, 99, 109836
[Online ahead of print]

Efficacy and Acceptability of Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS) for Major Depressive Disorder: An Individual Patient Data Meta-Analysis

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Review

Efficacy and Acceptability of Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS) for Major Depressive Disorder: An Individual Patient Data Meta-Analysis

Adriano H Moffa et al. Prog Neuropsychopharmacol Biol Psychiatry.

Abstract

We evaluated the efficacy and acceptability of transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) for treating acute depressive episodes using individual patient data that provide more precise estimates than aggregate data meta-analysis. A systematic review of placebo-controlled trials on tDCS as only intervention was conducted until December-2018. Data from each study was collated to estimate odds ratio (OR) and number needed to treat (NNT) of response and remission, and depression improvement. Endpoints were pre-determined. Nine eligible studies (572 participants), presenting moderate/high certainty of evidence, were included. Active tDCS was significantly superior to sham for response (30.9% vs. 18.9% respectively; OR = 1.96, 95%CI [1.30-2.95], NNT = 9), remission (19.9% vs. 11.7%, OR = 1.94 [1.19-3.16], NNT = 13) and depression improvement (effect size of β = 0.31, [0.15-0.47]). Moreover, continuous clinical improvement was observed even after the end of acute tDCS treatment. There were no differences in all-cause discontinuation rates and no predictors of response were identified. To conclude, active tDCS was statistically superior to sham in all outcomes, although its clinical effects were moderate.

Keywords: Bipolar disorder; Individual patient data; Major depressive disorder; Meta-analysis; Non-invasive brain stimulation; Randomized clinical trial; Systematic review; Transcranial direct current stimulation.

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