TMS for Depression Treatment Works

TMS therapy works, and the history of Depression treatment is a good start to understanding more about Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation


History of Depression treatment:

1- Antidepressant Medications.
2- Electro-Convulsive Therapy came into play as a grandfathered procedure and became approved by The FDA without any research. That is to say that ECT was grandfathered without any proven efficacy studies.

ECT common Effects: Some Headache, Body aches or pains, Confusion and Memory Loss (sometimes irreversible).
Concerning risks: Neck pains for some patients especially patients with spinal stenosis or Scoliosis. Patients with weak heart or recent stroke should proceed with caution.
Contraindications: Brain Tumor.

3- Light therapy – More common in Europe. It mostly causes eye/retinal damage and is not approved by the FDA.

4- Sleep Deprivation.

5- Psychotherapy (Talk Therapy) is good for Bereaving individuals, same as group therapy. Other than that, my personal opinion about this type of therapy is different. Many well respected colleagues will agree on this opinion. Basically letting time pass by, while COUNTING therapy expense sessions after which, you will feel a change……

6- The year 2008, cutting-edge Depression Treatment/TMS: Having dealt with ECT’s high expense and side-effects, there comes Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation/TMS. It is FDA and APA approved Treatment for both efficacy and safety.

TMS Advantages:

  • One out of three patients had full recovery of Depression.
  • One out of every two patients who received TMS had good recovery of symptoms (still about 30-50% did not respond to TMS)
  • Bypasses ECT side effects.
  • Safe for medically compromised or unstable patients.
  • No need for inpatient hospitalization.
  • Improvement is slower than ECT (not as Robust), but this also suggests that improvement fades over an extended period of time.

TMS Disadvantages:

  • Rare local discomfort or on rare occasion pain at the coil/treatment area.
  • Some Insurance companies refuse to pay the high cost per treatment @ 20-30 cumulative outpatient treatments for this outpatient procedure.
  • Financial hardship for private pay.

If TMS is not for you, the best message is: “Do Not Give Up.” “There are a lot of treatment options left to try.

Read here: May 8, 2012. New research data released about TMS.