Integrative medicine offers a long history of specialized treatment for depression.
In 2012 the World Health Organization conducted a survey of seventeen countries around the globe. The survey found that depression affected three hundred fifty million people, making it the leading cause of disability worldwide in terms of total years lost to disability.
Depression continues to grow despite professional efforts made to diagnose and treat it. Does this suggest there is room for other treatment modalities to offer assistance for this growing problem? Is it possible an ancient method using modern technology is applicable to the present model of depression?
Reviews of two randomized clinical studies address this, using the modern treatments: electroacupuncture and LASER.
The first study, done in 2004 by C. Han et al. compares electroacupuncture directly to anti-depressant medication. The second, done in 2013 by I. Quah-Smith et al. compares active laser acupuncture to non-active laser for the treatment of depression.
Each of these studies found that the electroacupuncture or the laser acupuncture modality is an effective treatment for relieving depression based upon various objective testing measures, e.g., the Hamilton-Depression Rating Scale.