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Electroconvulsive Therapy in Patients With Vagus Nerve Stimulation

Sharma, Ashish MD*; Chaturvedi, Rajeev MD*; Sharma, Arun MD†‡; Sorrell, James H. MD*

doi: 10.1097/YCT.0b013e31817e8ab4
Case Report

Numerous studies have demonstrated the safety and efficacy of electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) for various psychiatric conditions, and it has been approved by the Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of refractory depression. Recently, the Food and Drug Administration also approved vagus nerve stimulation as a treatment for chronic or recurrent depression. Although electrical stimulation is used for both ECT and vagus nerve stimulation, the mechanisms of their action are very different. The American Psychiatric Association task force identifies no absolute contraindications to the use of ECT. The authors present 2 interesting cases of successful ECT in combination with vagus nerve stimulator.

From the *Department of Psychiatry, University of Nebraska Medical Center, †Alegent Behavioral Health, and ‡Department of Clinical Psychiatry, School of Medicine, Creighton University, Omaha, NE.

Received for publication March 25, 2007; accepted April 28, 2008.

Reprints: Ashish Sharma, MD, 988470 Nebraska Medical Center, Omaha, NE 68198-8470 (e-mail:

There are no conflicts of interest, and there are no sources of any support for the work in the forms of grants, equipment, drugs, or any combination of these.

© 2009 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.