TMS Therapy: New Technology to Treat Depression
By: Melissa Stern
Updated: April 5, 2012
If your doctor has prescribed a number of antidepressants without results,
Dr. H.J. Bains, a local doctor, uses
There are close to 350 clinics using it in the country, and Dr. Bains says his clinic is only the second in the state. He says
"I haven't felt this good since I was a kid," says Lisa Nunn, a patient of Dr. Bains'. She says she has less anxiety and wants to do things besides lay in bed all day. "It's the best thing to happen to me in a long time."
Nunn says she had been on anti-depressants since she was 15, but nothing helped.
"It was quite bad. I slept a good deal of the time. Wasn't able to function well. I was in a pretty bad depression." She says after the first treatment she noticed a difference. "I had much more energy. I had much more stamina. I don't have the mood swings that I was having. I'm just generally a happier person."
Dwayne Dilbeck, her boyfriend, was very worried about her.
"She slept more of the day than she was awake," but he says he's noticed a huge difference. "She's more active. She's awake a lot more -- more alert. She's gotten back to where she's wanting to get back to writing again."
Dr. Bains says when patients first come in, he gives them a score on the depression scale.
"I have patients who come in with very high scores and by the time they finish treatment, their scores are almost close to zero to two or three, which is in the normal range."
"The area of the brain -- the prefrontal cortex -- that's the area of the brain which is underactive in people with depression."
The magnetic pulses recharge that area of the brain which helps take patients off their medications -- medications that could have side effects.
"You give medicine and you don't see any benefit for four to six weeks and all side effects from weight gains, sexual side effects, you name it."
"I have seen patients who have shown improvement by the second or third week."
"The first week everything surprised me because she was more active," adds Dilbeck. "She felt like getting out and going shopping. Couldn't keep her out of the stores!"
"It seemed to me that I kind of woke up from a long sleep," adds Nunn.
At Dr. Bains' clinic, Bay Medical Consulting,
You can experience mild tenderness on the head, but there are no other side effects. It is not covered by insurance.
It requires no anesthesia or medications, and the patient stays awake throughout the treatment.
Dr. Bains says it's also being used to help migraines, fibromyalgia, pain syndromes, hallucinations, and traumatic brain injuries.
Pregnant women who don't want to take medication can use it.
The American Psychiatric Association says it's good in some cases, but not effective for everyone.
Here is the
Transcranial magnetic stimulation (
In comparison with ECT,
Across all studies,
In clinical practice, the need for daily