Stimulation-rtms

Stimulation-rtms

Treatment of severe depression with magnetic stimulation is moving beyond large mental health centers and into private practices nationwide, following more than two decades of research on the treatment. Yet even as concern about its efficacy fades, one potential side effect—seizures—continues to shadow the technology.
Called repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS), the noninvasive technique uses electromagnets to create localized electrical currents in the brain. The gentle jolts activate certain neurons, reducing symptoms in some patients. Eight psychiatrists contacted for this article, all of whom use rTMS to treat depression, say it is the most significant development in the field since the advent of antidepressant medications. The prevailing theory is that people with depression do not produce enough of certain neurotransmitters, which include serotonin and dopamine. Electricity (administered in combination with antidepressants) stimulates production of those neurotransmitters.

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