One day soon, doctors may be able to quickly scan a depression patient’s brain, check his brain activity “fingerprint,” and select an antidepressant or psychotherapy accordingly.
Currently, psychiatrists use a trial-and-error method to prescribe antidepressants and psychotherapy. But the dawn of personalized depression treatments — be it with drugs and/or psychotherapy — is close, with doctors better able to predict a particular patient’s response to one type of treatment over another, The New York Times reports.
Helen Mayberg, M.D., a professor of psychiatry at Emory University, recently published a study in JAMA Psychiatry that identified a potential biomarker in the brain that can predict whether a depressed patient would respond better to psychotherapy or antidepressant medication. Read more.