The Effectiveness of High-Frequency Left DLPFC-rTMS on Depression, Response Inhibition, and Cognitive Flexibility in Female Subjects With Major Depressive Disorder

SOURCE: Journal of Psychiatric Research. 149:287-292, 2022 May.

AUTHORS: Asgharian Asl F; Vaghef L

BACKGROUND: The purpose of the present study was to investigate the effect of high-frequency repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation on depression severity, response inhibition, and cognitive flexibility in subjects with major depressive disorder.

METHODS: Twenty-eight female subjects with major depressive disorder were randomly divided into experimental and control groups. High frequency (20 Hz) rTMS stimulation at 85% of the MT consisted of 25 trains of 5 s duration, a total of 2500 pulses/session or sham stimulation was applied over the left DLPFC for five consecutive days per week, for two weeks. Depression severity, response inhibition, and cognitive flexibility of subjects were assessed by Beck Depression Inventory, Go/NoGo, and Wisconsin sort cards (WCST) tests, respectively, pre- and post-TMS intervention.

RESULTS: rTMS over the left DLPFC significantly decreased the depression severity at the Beck Depression Inventory, enhanced accuracy, and decreased reaction time at the Go/NoGo task. In the Wisconsin Card Sort Test, perseverative and non-perseverative errors and failure to maintain a set index significantly decreased following rTMS treatment.

CONCLUSIONS: Findings indicate that 20-Hz rTMS treatment on the left DLPFC has a positive effect on depression severity, response inhibition, and cognitive flexibility in depressed subjects.