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Tijdschrift voor Psychiatrie 48 (2006) 8, 619 - 625

New research

Prediction of response to ect with routinely collected data in major depression

I.M. de Vreede, H. Burger, I.M. van Vliet

background Little is known about the possibility to predict response to electroconvulsive therapy (ect) in patients with major depression.
aim To create an index for the prediction of response to ect in an individual patient.
method Fifty-three depressive patients referred for ect were included. Poor response was defined as a decrease in Hamilton Rating Depression Scale less than 50%. With multivariable analyses a simple index of independent predictors was constructed.
results Thirty-one patients (58%) showed poor response. The index comprised age < 65 years, psychotic depression, refractory to antidepressant medication, and personality disorder. It discriminated poor response patients reasonably well with an area under the receiver operating characteristic curve of 0.76 (95% confidence interval 0.63-0.89).
conclusion Response to ect may be predicted using an index with four patient characteristics. Before implementation, however, validation of the index in future patients is mandatory.

keywords major depression, ect, predictors of response