A study led by Dr. Scott T. Aaronson, published in JAMA Psychiatry, offers new insights into treating treatment-resistant bipolar type II depression with synthetic psilocybin combined with psychotherapy. The study involved 15 participants, aged 18 to 65, who received a single 25mg dose of synthetic COMP360 psilocybin along with psychotherapy sessions.
Significantly, 80% of the participants met the remission criteria 12 weeks post-treatment without experiencing an increase in bipolar II symptoms. This indicates psilocybin's potential efficacy in treating bipolar II depression in a clinical setting. The controlled environment and the guidance of trained mental health professionals are important factors distinguishing this clinical application from recreational scenarios.
"Individuals in this study displayed strong and persistent antidepressant effects with no signal of worsening mood instability or increased suicidality."
The study's findings suggest that while psilocybin shows promise in treating certain mental health conditions, it is most effective for mental health conditions in clinical settings. This research is optimistic about new avenues in mental health treatment, particularly for conditions that have proven challenging to manage with traditional therapies.
The study specifically excluded individuals with Bipolar I Disorder, widely recognized as a contraindication for the use of psychedelic medicines. However, if an individual with Bipolar I is not currently experiencing a manic phase, some researchers and clinicians believe that the use of such treatments may be acceptable under some conditions.
About Bipolar II
Bipolar II Disorder is characterized by a pattern of depressive episodes and hypomanic episodes, distinguishing it from other depressive disorders. Unlike Bipolar I, which involves more severe manic episodes, Bipolar II features milder hypomanic episodes that do not cause significant social or occupational impairment. This contrasts with Major Depressive Disorder, which involves depressive episodes without the accompanying manic or hypomanic phases seen in bipolar disorders.
For more detailed insights, you can access the full study here.