Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) Depression TherapyTMS is an FDA (Food & Drug Administration) approved treatment for depression that has not responded to antidepressant treatment. This is referred to as "treatment resistant depression." While many people achieve remission, or at least significant improvement, when treated with psychotherapy & antidepressants and other medications as supplemental or adjunctive, there remains a significant number of patients who just do not get better. In my practice I have seen patients who have suffered with unremitting depression for more than twenty years. For that group there is new hope with TMS.
TMS is a treatment that delivers magnetic pulses with the strength of MRIs to the brain through the skull while the patient is fully awake. A treatment program requires at least twenty treatments over four weeks. Usually the patient is treated for five consecutive days each week. Each treatment session lasts about one hour with active treatment requiring approximately 40 minutes. There is no need for any injections, (non-invasive) or for any medications. The patient is allowed to remain on any medications that s/he is already taking. After each session the patient can resume normal activities.
TMS works by delivering magnetic pulses through the skull to the frontal cortex of the brain. Once in the brain tissue, these magnetic pulses are converted to electrical charges that stimulate the brain neurons to increase the neurotransmitters that are responsible for our thinking, feeling and behaviors. With depression, there is a slowing down of all of these factors. Our thinking is not as sharp as we would like it to be, we feel sad and disconnected from the people we usually relate to, and we tend to isolate ourselves. TMS essentially re-boots the brain & normalizes how one thinks, feels and behaves. Joyfulness returns, as well as a sense of productivity and connectedness to others.
To request a DVD that demonstrates TMS treatment and/or inquire about the service please fill out the contact form on the right-hand side of this page or call Dr. Benoit at 202-607-3032.