Why TMS Therapy Is a Good Option for People With Treatment-Resistant Depression (TRD)

TMS Therapy

If you’ve been diagnosed with depression, you’ve more than likely tried antidepressant medications to try and relieve your symptoms. Finding the right treatment is a trial-and-error process that involves patience until you find the medication that works for you. Sometimes, people with depression don’t see results, even after trying two or more medications. In this case, your doctor may tell you that you have treatment-resistant depression (TRD).

Fortunately, transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) therapy has provided an alternative treatment option for patients with TRD.

TMS Therapy is Evidence-Based

Evidence shows that TMS therapy relieves symptoms of depression, even when medications don’t. A review of 18 studies that compared treatment with TMS therapy compared to sham treatment showed that subjects who received TMS therapy treatment were five times more likely to achieve remission than subjects who received sham treatment. Subjects included individuals diagnosed with major depressive disorder and treatment-resistant depression.

TMS Therapy Provides Long-Term Results

TMS therapy is a one-course treatment of seven weeks. Unlike antidepressants, which need to be taken indefinitely, TMS therapy is completed after seven weeks and has proven to provide long-term results.

As part of a nation-wide study, researchers observed 257 patients from all over the country who received TMS therapy treatment in a clinical practice. These patients were observed throughout the course of 52 weeks (at three, six, nine, and 12 weeks) after treatment and their symptoms were recorded. Out of the 257 patients who received TMS therapy treatment, 120 met the criteria to be considered in remission right after treatment. Of these 120 who achieved remission immediately following treatment, 75 continued to meet the criteria for remission after the one-year follow-up period.

TMS Therapy Has No Long-Term Side Effects

TMS therapy is not a systemic treatment, meaning that it doesn’t enter the bloodstream. Because of the nature of the treatment, TMS therapy doesn’t have the long-term side effects associated with antidepressants, like weight gain and low libido. Moreover, it does not have any known adverse interactions with medications. So if your doctor recommends that you continue taking your antidepressant medication throughout TMS therapy treatment, you can do so without any concerns.

TMS Therapy is an Outpatient Procedure

TMS therapy is a noninvasive outpatient procedure — there’s no need for anesthesia. After your treatment session, you can drive and even return to work. TMS therapy has no effect on your ability to concentrate or recall information (memory). Typical side effects associated with TMS therapy include mild scalp discomfort that is only present during the 19-minute treatment.

Dignity Brain Health Is Here To Help

If you have any questions about depression and how TMS therapy can help relieve depressive symptoms, know that you can contact our caring and attentive staff at Dignity Brain Health. We’re here to answer questions, help with treatment, and most importantly, serve as a support system for your depression treatment with TMS therapy.

Resources:

https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC181155/

https://www.mayoclinic.org/tests-procedures/transcranial-magnetic-stimulation/about/pac-20384625

Omar Haque