We are having an Open House!
DATE: Tuesday January 24th, 2012
DATE: Tuesday January 24th, 2012
It is now official! Our first TMS NeuroHealth Center is open for business. The first of a national network of centers offering Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation Therapy, Tyson’s Corner (McLean, Virginia) opened its doors in November, 2011.
TMS Therapy is an FDA-cleared, non-invasive medical treatment for patients with depression without any of the side effects typically experienced with antidepressant medication, such as weight gain, sexual problems or fatigue. It uses highly focused magnetic pulses to gently stimulate the area of the brain that controls mood. This specific area has been identified as under active in people who suffer from depression. Stimulation leads to the release of chemical neurotransmitters, relieving the symptoms of depression.
Patients and doctors call it “simple yet incredibly efficient”, “gentle, painless, quick”; many others simply call it “unbelievable”. Truth is that TMS Therapy is the result of almost 3 decades of nerve and brain research that led to the exploration of transcranial magnetic stimulation for the treatment of a variety of diseases during the late 90s. Since then, more than 30 randomized, controlled trials have studied TMS Therapy and produced medical publications by investigators throughout the world.
Depression hurts in many ways, and one of them is financially. In 2000, it was concluded that the economic burden of depression for patients with treatment-resistant depression was $83.1 billion in the United States alone – this was 2 to 6 times greater than for patients not suffering from treatment-resistant depression.
The economic burden of depression is not only measured on the cost of treatment and medication, but also the costs on loss of productivity and caregiver costs. Such costs were taken into account during an open-label condition study comparing TMS Therapy (with an average reimbursement rate of $350 per treatment session) to anti-depressant medication treatment.
New results presented at the American Psychiatric Association Meeting in Hawaii back in May of this year match those of observed patients treated in a controlled clinical trial setting. The results were measured using two scales; the Inventory of Depressive Symptoms Self-Report Scale (IDS-SR) which showed that 1 in 2 patients (53.6%) responded to TMS therapy while 1 in 3 (35.1%) achieved remission by the end of acute treatment. Using the Patient Health Questionnaire Nine item scale (PHQ-9) presented similar positive results with 2 in 3 patients (66.7%) reported no or only mild depression.
You’ve all heard of Electroconvulsive Therapy (ECT) where patients are first anesthetized and then clonic seizures are electrically induced as treatment for severe depression that has not responded to other treatments. The patient loses consciousness and has convulsions lasting for at least 15 seconds. In addition, half of the patients who remit tend to relapse within six months of ECT and there has been controversy over the negative effects on brain structure, memory, and general cognition.
Depression patients see every day as an uphill battle. Even when on medication, the possibility of relapsing is a constant black cloud darkening even their brightest days. There are several triggers that can cause a relapse; stress, sleep deprivation, hormonal changes, change in treatment; any of these could affect the patient.
Depression treatments based on medication have long been known to cause more harm than good on certain patients. There are numerous medical articles and papers that show that fewer than 50% of people become symptom free on antidepressants and the chances of relapse can reach 80%, despite being on a monitored drug treatment. Also important is the addicting qualities of most antidepressants, and withdrawal could trigger newer symptoms or increase old ones.
If you can identify with the questions above, you should keep reading and find out more about Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS). TMS is an FDA cleared treatment for patients suffering from depression who have not achieved satisfactory improvement from prior antidepressant treatment.
Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation Therapy (TMS) is an FDA cleared treatment for patients with severe depression and not many healthcare providers are entirely aware of the latest improvements in the TMS field. Make sure you discuss with your primary healthcare provider or psychiatrist, if your symptoms, medication, and prior treatment make you a good candidate for TMS Therapy.