Both Veterans and non-Veterans, ages 18 to 80, are encouraged to enroll.
The Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center (MEDVAMC) is currently conducting several clinical research studies offering novel interventions for patients with treatment-resistant depression. The goal is to reduce the time when patients are at greatest risk for serious consequences of depression such as suicide.
Treatment-resistant depression occurs in 10 percent to 40 percent of patients with major depression. This type of depression is diagnosed when an individual has not responded optimally to a six-week trial of at least one U.S. Food and Drug Administration-approved medication.
"Treatment-resistant depression is quite a common and disabling condition,” said Rayan Al Jurdi, M.D., MEDVAMC psychiatrist and an assistant professor at Baylor College of Medicine. “It affects all facets of your life and can even complicate serious health conditions such as heart disease or cancer.”
Funded by the National Institute of Mental Health, the studies will test new medications for treatment-resistant depression in both Veterans and non-Veterans, male and female, ages 18 to 80.
“We are attempting to treat the symptoms of depression in a more rapid fashion than conventional medications which might take two to three months to become effective,” said Sanjay Mathew, M.D., MEDVAMC psychiatrist, an associate professor at Baylor College of Medicine, and listed as one of the best doctors in the nation in the field of psychiatry by the medical knowledge company, Best Doctors, Inc. “It is during this ‘lag’ time patients might be at greatest risk for serious consequences of depression such as suicide.”
Individuals with active substance abuse, psychotic disorders, bipolar disorder, unstable medical illnesses such as uncontrolled hypertension or diabetes, or neurological disorders such as seizures or stroke are not eligible to participate.
These studies have been approved by the Baylor College of Medicine Institutional Review Board and the MEDVAMC Research and Development Program. Participants may be compensated for their time and travel.
For more information, call Dr. Mathew’s office at 713-791-1414 ext. 4158, dial toll-free 877-96-BCM-MOOD, or e-mail Mood@bcm.edu.
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