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Scientists Use Magnets To Fight Depression Scientists Use Magnets To Fight Depression

Depression and antidepressant use rates are staggering in 2017, with about one-third of patients taking no benefit after treatment, and for whom transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) The magnet non-invasively stimulates brain cells - perhaps a viable option.

In fact, TMS is not a new therapy and was approved by the CFDA in 2008. Among the novelties is the growing evidence of the safety and efficacy of this therapy. According to the World Health Organization, about 350 million people worldwide suffer from depression, making it one of the leading causes of disability in the world. 30% of patients with depression do not want to receive treatment and show their thoughts and attempts to commit suicide, resulting in a deterioration in overall quality of life.

Depression plagued Brenda Griffith, a 63-year-old retired nurse. Griffith was diagnosed with the disease by the psychiatrist James Beeghly in the early 1990s and since then has taken almost every prescription for antidepressant medications.

Antidepressants are the most common treatment in related therapies. However, Griffith has refractory depression, which means that the patient still has symptoms associated with two or more antidepressants.

As an alternative, Griffith used an electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), an invasive procedure that passes current through the brain to treat more severe depression. "ETC saved my life but failed to get me back and I had to give up nursing," she said. To this end, she chose TMS.

In transcranial magnetic stimulation, a small electromagnetic coil is placed at the precise location of the patient's head. For depressed patients, this location is the brain's left frontal cortex, where depression is usually less active. TMS is noninvasive compared to ECT. When TMS was first introduced to the clinic, many people were hesitant about the therapy because of safety issues. However, recent studies show that the therapy has no obvious safety concerns. "Noninvasive means that no surgery is needed," said Aaron Boes, a TMS expert at Iowa State University. "In fact, there is so much information about the safety of TMS that patients do not have a significant negative cognitive effect and that epilepsy The risk is less than 0.1%. "

It is reported that the standard transcranial magnetic stimulation usually takes 4 to 6 weeks, receiving 40 minutes daily treatment. During treatment, patients can read or speak to other people. In addition, patients can go on their own or leave alone after treatment without having to be accompanied by someone else. After 3 weeks of TMS treatment, Griffith's symptoms begin to improve. "TMS made Brenda better and made her more like her," Beeghly said.

According to statistics, 58% of TMS-treated patients have a positive response, the degree of depression reduced by more than 50%, 37% of patients with symptoms were completely relieved. "TMS produces a more durable effect, but it is not a curative therapy, which usually lasts for about nine months and then requires continuous treatment," Boes said.
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