Through years of research, experts have determined that serotonin levels in the brain may be the cause of depression in patients. Serotonin is the chemical responsible for creating “happy feelings” in people. An imbalance has been cited as a catalyst for depression, and a new device may be able to measure levels of the chemical in the near future.
Recently, experts announced that a Wireless Instantaneous Neurotransmitter Concentration System (WINCS) can detect the level of serotonin in the brains of patients. By gathering this information, medical professionals may be able to induce deep brain simulation for psychiatric diseases.
Kendall Lee, a neurosurgeon who helped with the research, said that the WINCS was able to measure serotonin levels in real time. Experts who conducted the experiment involving the WINCS believe that it may be an important tool in treating individuals who have conditions like depression.
Approximately 14 million Americans suffer from major depressive disorder annually, according to the National Institute of Mental Health. Individuals who do not receive a diagnosis may turn to illicit substances to cope with the symptoms. Drug rehab programs and rehabilitation facilities can help people who have turned to substance abuse as a result of their depression.