New Therapies Show Promise For Vascular Depression

Researchers see new treatments on the horizon for a type of depression related to blood vessels that affects the elderly, and have discovered why some elderly people fail to respond to current medications. In other studies, scientists urge caution regarding use of antipsychotics (usually for schizophrenia or other psychosis) in this and other populations to minimize metabolic, heart, and stroke risks.

The scientists spoke today at a press conference involving speakers from two symposia sponsored by National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), a part of the National Institutes of Health, during the American Psychiatric Association Annual Meeting here.

“Mental health practitioners and patients should be aware of the relationship between vascular problems and depression, and should understand the value of preventing vascular changes that might lead to difficult-to-treat depressions, for example through early recognition and treatment of high blood pressure” says John Newcomer, MD, of Washington University in St. Louis.

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