Monday, October 13, 2014

Promising Results: Doctors Treat Depression & Anorexia With New Therapy – Holding A Magnet To The Head


A new treatment for depression has been showing some promising results for patients experiencing chronic depression.

The treatment is called transcranial magnetic stimulation, or rTMS, and like the title suggests the treatment involves having an electromagnetic field applied to the head to stimulate specific areas. Brain scans suggest transcranial magnetic stimulation can cause changes in the circuitry of the brain, hence why the treatment is being targeted to people with severe depression and other psychological conditions.

In depression, doctors target the prefrontal cortex, the region of the brain involved in decision making, mood and emotional responses. This month, U.S. researchers reported that the treatment triggered significant improvements in patients with severe depression who had failed to respond to other treatments, including antidepressants.

Sue’s Story: Hope In A New Therapy

In Chloe Lambert’s article for the Daily Mail, Can holding a magnet against your head help defeat depression?, she discusses the story of a doctor, Sue Mildrid, who recently found success with rTMS. For decades, Sue suffered from a depression that was so severe it hindered her ability to go to work.
Sue tried most conventional therapies, including electro-convulsive therapy (ECT), which began showing some positive results at first. But itabout wasn’t long until Sue noticed her memory being affected by the treatment, a common side effect to ECT. At that point Sue became convinced that she would always be living with her condition.

That all changed when Sue discovered rTMS. ‘I read up on it, and after looking at the trials carried out over the years, felt comfortable trying it,’ she told the Daily Mail.

She found a private clinic and began her new regime, which consisted of 5 sessions a week for 6-8 weeks. During each 30-minute treatment, Sue sat in a chair while a magnetic coil was held against her head. Up to 3,000 magnetic pulses were applied to her brain for a few seconds at a time, followed by a break of a few seconds.

Although the positive affects from the treatment have been very gradual, Sue says that it has already changed her life.
For the rest of the story:

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