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HOW TMS COMBATS MAJOR DEPRESSIVE DISORDER

March 10, 2022

Transcranial magnetic stimulation has been used to treat major depressive disorder for decades. The FDA has officially approved TMS as a treatment for clinical depression. In this article, we’ll review TMS and why it is becoming even more popular as an alternative to antidepressant medication.

A non-invasive treatment option that stimulates nerve cells in the brain to improve symptoms of major depressive disorder (MDD) would be a welcome alternative for many people with depression. Fortunately, treatments like transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) offer patients this option.

People who suffer from depression experience a range of symptoms that can greatly diminish their quality of life and include:

  • Anger or irritability
  • Fatigue
  • Loss of interest in activities once enjoyed (anhedonia)
  • Lack of energy
  • Low self-esteem/self-worth
  • Trouble concentrating
  • Trouble sleeping or oversleeping
  • Weight loss or gain/changes in appetite
  •  Difficulty with memory and decision-making skills

In many cases, a combination of antidepressant medications and psychotherapy is effective for people diagnosed with depression. However, for some patients, antidepressant medications do not improve their symptoms or may cause adverse side effects that affect their quality of life.

For these patients, TMS may be an option. According to the National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH), TMS involves non-invasive stimulation of specific areas of the brain via magnetic fields. The NIMH also reports that the procedure is FDA-approved for patients with the major depressive disorder who have not responded to at least one antidepressant medication. However, most major insurance companies require trials of 2-4 antidepressant medications before covering the cost of the treatment.

TMS works by creating a magnetic pulse that passes through the skull and stimulates nerve cells in the area of the brain involved with mood regulation. Specifically, it targets an area called the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC), which is involved in mood regulation.

According to the Psychiatric Times, “a review examined 66 studies in depressed patients who were treated with TMS targeting the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. It found that high-frequency TMS generally increased regional cerebral blood flow, whereas low-frequency TMS generally decreased regional cerebral blood flow, which is reduced in a depressed brain.”

Why St. Cloud TMS Provides The Best Major Depressive Disorder Treatment

At St. Cloud TMS, we offer a comprehensive and experienced approach to the treatment of depression and other mental health issues. We have helped people from St. Cloud TMS and the surrounding communities with TMS for more than a decade.

Our extensive experience, along with our care team’s dedication to providing individualized treatment plans, has allowed us to offer our patients the best clinical outcome in terms of minimizing or eliminating depressive symptoms.

We welcome those who are considering St. Cloud TMS as an alternative to antidepressant medication and want to learn more about the treatment. Please contact us today for additional information at info@stcloudtms.com or visit our site at www.stcloudtms.com

READY TO BEGIN YOUR JOURNEY?

We provide life-changing Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation for medication-resistant depression. Contact us today to learn more or schedule an appointment with one of our Treatment Coordination Specialists!