Vagus Nerves Stimulation: Clinical Implication and Practical Issue as a Neuropsychiatric Treatment
Bori Jung1,2, Chaeyeon Yang1, Seung-Hwan Lee1,3
1Clinical Emotion and Cognition Research Laboratory, Inje University, Goyang, Korea
2Department of Psychology, Sogang University, Seoul, Korea
3Department of Psychiatry, Ilsan Paik Hospital, Inje University College of Medicine, Goyang, Korea
Correspondence to: Seung-Hwan Lee
Department of Psychiatry, Ilsan Paik Hospital, Inje University College of Medicine, 170 Juhwa-ro, Ilsanseo-gu, Goyang 10380, Korea
Received: June 14, 2023; Revised: July 26, 2023; Accepted: August 2, 2023; Published online: August 23, 2023.
© The Korean College of Neuropsychopharmacology. All rights reserved.

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Vagus nerve stimulation (VNS) has been approved as an adjunctive treatment for epilepsy and depression. As the progress of VNS treatment for these neuropsychiatric disorders continues, its applications have expanded to a wide range of conditions, including inflammatory diseases to cognitive dysfunctions. The branches of the vagal nerves directly or indirectly innervate the anatomical structures implicated in these neuropsychiatric conditions, which has led to promising results regarding the effectiveness of VNS. Previous studies investigating the effectiveness of VNS have mostly utilized invasive forms of stimulation. However, current preclinical and clinical research indicates that non-invasive forms of VNS, such as transcutaneous vagus nerve stimulation, hold the promise for treating various neuropsychiatric conditions. This review aims to delve into relevant clinical studies of VNS in various illness states, different methods of VNS, and the potential mechanisms underlying the therapeutic effects in these neuropsychiatric conditions.
Keywords: Vagus nerve stimulation; Vagus nerves; Neuropsychiatric disorder; Depression

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