Levels of interleukin-6 (IL-6) and C-reactive protein (CRP) may be useful in identifying treatment-resistant depressed patients most likely to benefit from ECT treatment.
A study included 29 patients who had a current MDD episode and were scheduled to undergo ECT. Their levels of IL-6, CRP, IL-8, and tumor necrosis factor-α and severity of depressive symptoms were prospectively evaluated before ECT treatment, after the second ECT session, and again at the completion of the index treatment series.
In multivariate analyses, higher levels of IL-6 at baseline, but not other inflammatory markers or clinical variables, were associated with lower end-of-treatment depression rating scores. When stratified by sex, IL-6 remained a significant predictor of end-of-treatment depression for women, but not for men, and CRP emerged as a significant predictor for women, but not men.