When Can I Expect Benefits?
Adding VNS Therapy has been shown to succeed where other treatments have not.1 Clinical studies confirm that the effectiveness of VNS Therapy improves over time and is sustained long term.1

After 1 year of VNS Therapy, 1 in 3 people receiving VNS Therapy experienced significant mood improvement, compared with 1 in 8 people who received only other antidepressant treatments.2 Many people who did not respond immediately to VNS Therapy did experience improvement over time.1 Most people who responded to VNS Therapy maintained their improvement long term.1 For some, VNS Therapy reduced the need for antidepressant medications over time.1

Some people experienced mood improvements within the first few weeks; for others, the benefits developed gradually over time.1 Sometimes improvement was so gradual that friends and family members observed it before the person did. Even if it takes several months to notice the effect of VNS Therapy, it's reassuring to know that people on VNS Therapy have been shown to improve over time.

Quality-of-Life Benefits

In addition, many people experienced improvement in important quality-of-life areas.3 When measured after 9 months of VNS Therapy, improvements were seen in:

  • Vitality—increased energy
  • Social functioning—increased interaction with family and/or friends
  • Emotional well-being—better function at work and in daily activities
  • Mental health—more positive feelings


1. Rush AJ, Sackeim HA, Marangell LB, et al. Effects of 12 months of vagus nerve stimulation in treatment-resistant depression: a naturalistic study. Biol Psychiatry. 2005;58:355-363
. 2. George MS, Rush AJ, Marangell LB, et al. A one-year comparison of vagus nerve stimulation with treatment as usual for treatment-resistant depression. Biol Psychiatry. 2005;58:364-373. 3. Depression Physician's Manual. VNS Therapy Pulse Model 102 Generator and VNS Therapy Pulse Duo Model 102R Generator. Houston, Tex: Cyberonics, Inc.; May
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The VNS Therapy System is indicated for use as an adjunctive therapy in reducing the frequency of seizures in adults and adolescents over 12 years of age with partial onset seizures, which are refractory to antiepileptic medications.

VNS Therapy (or the VNS Therapy System) is indicated for the adjunctive long-term treatment of chronic or recurrent depression for patients over the age of 18 who are experiencing a major depressive episode and have not had an adequate response to four or more adequate antidepressant treatments.