VNS Therapy: Adjusting the Dose
Your psychiatrist or nurse adjusts the VNS Therapy pulse generator to deliver the appropriate dose for you, and can easily provide dose adjustments during an office visit. VNS Therapy stimulation typically lasts for 30 seconds every 5 minutes. Once the pulse generator is adjusted, stimulation is regular and automatic, and generally unnoticeable. VNS Therapy is typically painless, because the vagus nerve does not contain pain fibers. You also do not have to worry about undesired interactions with other treatments.1

The dose settings impact how long the battery will last. For example, the battery may last for 3 years at a higher setting, compared with 8 years at a lower setting.*

*For the full range of settings in relationship to battery life, see the Physician's Manual or ask your psychiatrist.

"After about 2 weeks of recovery or healing, then the device is activated through a wand and a small computer system and the dose that is given to the patient is individualized, or customized. The dose is sought that has minimal side effects but also has therapeutic effect for that individual. The dose adjustments are required typically over the first several weeks or even the first couple of months of VNS Therapy, and after that the device is checked from time to time to be sure that is working properly and further dose adjustments can be made if needed."

A. John Rush, MD, Vice Chair, Department of Clinical Sciences Professor, Department of Psychiatry University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas

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1. Depression Physician's Manual. VNS Therapy TM Pulse Model 102 Generator and VNS TherapyTM Pulse Duo Model 102R Generator.Houston, Tex: Cyberonics, Inc.; 2005

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.