L'utilisation de la stimulation cérébrale non-invasive pour réduire les symptômes de stress-post traumatique chez les militaires

Authors: Levasseur-Moreau, Jean
Advisor: Fecteau, ShirleyBeaulieu, Jean Martin
Abstract: Introduction. Posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is a psychiatric condition that occurs in 8% of the general population and up to 30% of the military population. Despite several existing treatments, such as psychotherapy and pharmacotherapy, responsiveness rates in PTSD remain below 50%. There is thus a need to develop novel therapeutic approaches. Randomized controlled trial studies have reported promising results using repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) to alleviate PTSD symptom severity. An analogue technique to rTMS, intermittent theta burst stimulation (iTBS), is believed to produce longer lasting effects through long-term potentiation. Objectives and hypotheses Our general objective was to develop a greater understanding of the effects of iTBS in patients with PTSD. Therefore, we aimed at testing the safety, as well as the effects of active iTBS on clinical, cognitive and neurobiological variables in military personnel diagnosed with PTSD, compared to sham iTBS. Our hypothesis was that active iTBS, by modulating neurobiological aspects relevant in PTSD, would decrease symptom severity associated with PTSD, and induce cognitive improvements, compared to sham iTBS. Method This study was a two-arm, 1-month prospective, double blind, randomized, sham-controlled study. Twenty-eight military patients with PTSD received daily iTBS session applied over the right dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) for 5 consecutive days, at the same time of the day (between 7:00 and 10:00 am). We measured clinical symptoms using standardized questionnaires assessing 1- PTSD symptoms; 2- anxiety symptoms; 3- depression symptoms; and 4- quality of life. Cognitive measures consisted of 2 attentional tasks (Dot Probe and Rapid serial visual presentation) assessing attentional bias for stimuli expressing anger. Neurobiological measurements included resting state functional connectivity using magnetic resonance imaging and metabolites concentration (NAA et GABA), as well as cortisol levels using salivary samples, before and after the iTBS regimen. All these measures were taken before and after iTBS. Clinical and cortisol assessments were also taken at follow-up, one month after the last iTBS session. Results The iTBS was safe and well tolerated. There was no significant difference between active and sham iTBS on PTSD, anxiety and depression outcomes. However, symptom severity significantly decreased over time for patients from both iTBS conditions. There was a significant difference between iTBS groups on quality of life that varied across time points assessments. We did not report any effect on attentional bias. Statistical analyses were not performed on metabolites concentrations due to poor data quality. There was a significant increase in cortisol levels for patients who received active iTBS as compared to those who received sham iTBS. There was also a significant increase in functional connectivity between the right DLPFC, the mPFC and the right caudate nucleus in patients who received iTBS compared to those who received sham iTBS. Conclusion We reported a decrease (not statistically significant) in symptoms of PTSD, anxiety and depression, as well as an improvement (statistically significant) in quality of life for the group who received the active iTBS. Active iTBS also modulated neurobiological substrates relevant in PTSD, such as the functional connectivity between key regions involved in this pathology, as well as salivary cortisol concentration. Other iTBS studies with longer lasting protocol could help shed some light on its clinical efficacy in treating PTSD
Document Type: Thèse de doctorat
Issue Date: 2018
Open Access Date: 7 May 2018
Permalink: http://hdl.handle.net/20.500.11794/29638
Grantor: Université Laval
Collection:Thèses et mémoires

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