Depression accounts for a lot of deaths in the world. According to a Mental Health Survey taken in 17 countries, 1 out 20 people are affected by it. According also to WHO, approximately 350 million people are affected by it all over the world.
Being one of the most widespread mental condition in the world, there’s still very little known about depression. One of the most nagging question about is how it develops. Bio-chemical imbalance in the brain is suspected to be behind it but experts have no definite answer up to know.
A very definitive answer may have been discovered by a group of Canadian researchers. Depression, according to their study, may have a direct connection with a brain inflammation. Inflammation is one of the body’s defense mechanism, similar to fever, when the body is experiencing infection or injury. The antibodies go into hyper drive to contain whatever is causing the illness.
It might be that the same thing is happening when the depression sets in. While the inflammation is still going on, the brain continue to find ways to neutralize what is causing it, whether an accident or a disease, moderate or serious.
Studying the brain scans of 20 patients diagnosed with depressions and another 20 who are normal, the researchers at Center for Addiction and Mental Health located in Toronto, Canada, came up with their own evaluation.
The study revealed that a link exists between a person who is diagnosed with severe depression and brain inflammation with a person suffering from depression being 30% more likely to have a brain inflammation.
Furthermore, a correlation exists between depression symptoms and the brain inflammation. The relationship is directly proportion to each other. The more inflamed the brain is, the more the depression that the individual experiences.
Does this mean that depressions can be cured by taking anti inflammatory drugs?
People who are suffering from depressions have also suicidal tendencies and may tend to isolate themselves from society. The association between the two may also bring to light, for the time being, why people suffering from long time diseases, such as lupus erythematosus may suffer from depression.
Being yet at a very stage, the authors need more time to study. One of the most important questions that need to be addressed is what comes first. Is it the depression or the inflammation?
The result of the research, nevertheless, had shed light to the idea that treating the inflammation may also mean reducing the depression or curing it entirely.
You can read more about the study in the latest issue of JAMA Psychiatry.