Researchers claim a fast-acting nasal spray could treat depression in a safe way. This device can be especially useful for patients who do not respond well to treatments currently available.
Researchers say anti-depressants have proven ineffective for many people with depression. However, treating patients with esketamine nasal spray along with oral antidepressants has been found to be more fruitful. "Not only was adjunctive esketamine therapy effective, the improvement was evident within the first 24 hours,” said Michael Thase from the University of Pennsylvania in the US, told a news portal. Adding, "The novel mechanism of action of esketamine, coupled with the rapidity of benefit, underpin just how important this development is for patients with difficult to treat depression."
The study included almost 200 participants with moderate to severe depression. In the past, these participants were also found to have difficulty responding to two or more antidepressants. The team randomly selected participants to be part of two groups. The first group was provided with about 56 or 84 milligrammes of esketamine nasal spray twice a week instead of their current medication. They were also prescribed with new antidepressants(duloxetine, escitalopram, sertraline, or extended-release venlafaxine). The second group was given a placebo nasal spray along with new antidepressants.
Researchers noticed a significant improvement in the first group by day 28. The effects of the treatment that included the sketamine nasal spray were evident with the first 24 hours. Even though researchers noted that the first group did experience side effects like nausea, vertigo, dysgeusia (distortion of the sense of taste) and dizziness, these issues were resolved after a little over an hour. The study's findings were published in the American Journal of Psychiatry.
Depression is a growing public health issue that many people face in this hectic day and age. One study found working more than 55 hours a week can increase the risk of depression, particularly in women. "Such jobs, when combined with frequent or complex interactions with the public or clients, have been linked to higher levels of depression," the authors of the study as quoted as saying. Adding, "Our findings of more depressive symptoms among women working extra long hours might also be explained by the potential double burden experienced by women when their long hours in paid work are added on their time in domestic labour."
The need to tackle the mental disorder early won't just improve quality of life, but it will also help reduce the risk of heart disease and arthritis.