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When the relentless weight of depression bears down, finding the right treatment can be a game-changer. Active Path Mental Health provides traditional therapies including antidepressants and psychotherapy. But for some patients, traditional paths do not provide the relief they desperately need. For these patients, transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) can offer a hopeful path to well-being.

TMS sends magnetic energy to the parts of the brain involved with depression. This noninvasive form of brain stimulation is quickly becoming a worthy contender in the battle against treatment-resistant depression.

Active Path Mental Health offers two types of TMS therapy: repetitive TMS (rTMS) and deep TMS. Both are performed by clinicians, under the supervision of a psychiatrist. Both are usually used for when other depression treatments have not been effective. The goal is to stimulate the specific area of the brain associated with mood regulation.

Repetitive TMS vs. deep TMS: What is the difference?

There are key differences between these two therapies. The original form of TMS is repetitive TMS (rTMS). A coil positioned above the scalp delivers magnetic pulses that can reach about 0.6 inches (1.5 cm) into the brain.

Deep TMS is delivered through a helmet placed on a patient’s head. There is no pulsing. The helmet delivers a continuous electromagnetic field that reaches about 1.6 inches (4 cm) into the brain. Deep TMS is a technology that can reach deeper, harder-to-reach regions of the brain.

Both forms of TMS are offered by Active Path Mental Health. Both are noninvasive and do not require sedatives, anesthesia, incisions or lengthy recovery times.

What is the rate of success with TMS?

At Active Path Mental Health, we are seeing impressive patient outcomes with TMS:

  • 79% of patients have shown a greater than 25% reduction in symptoms.
  • 56% experience a 50% reduction in depression.
  • 33% achieve remission and no longer experience depression symptoms.

How does this stack up against outside evidence?

Active Path Mental Health’s TMS depression treatment specialists offer NeuroStar TMS Therapy (rTMS) and Brainsway deep TMS therapy.

NeuroStar reports that 83% of their patients experience an improvement in their depression (slightly higher than Active Path’s 79%). But 62% of patients show complete remission of symptoms — almost double Active Path’s findings.

BrainsWay’s deep TMS technology has been used in more than 60 controlled trials. A 2015 multicenter study published in World Psychiatry found that 1 in 3 patients with treatment-resistant depression (about 33%) achieved remission after the first four weeks. These findings are right on par with Active Path Mental Health’s results. The study also found that 80% of patients who did not immediately respond to treatment did experience improvements later on.

Deep TMS has been shown to have an even more impressive effect in real-life clinical practice settings. BrainsWay says that, based on data from more than 1,300 patients, 80% of those who completed at least 30 deep TMS sessions experienced decreased depression symptoms. That’s very comparable to Active Path Mental Health’s 79% finding. About 67% of patients achieved remission. That’s more than double Active Path Mental Health’s findings.

Some patients combine TMS with other therapy. A groundbreaking 2019 study in the Journal of Psychiatric Research found that 60% of patients who received deep TMS combined with medication achieved remission. Only 11% achieved remission with medication alone.

The verdict on TMS depression treatment

Evidence suggests that TMS does work, and the results are promising. Active Path Mental Health’s TMS depression treatment specialists are seeing outcomes that show TMS to be highly effective. And results can last up to a year after treatment.

As TMS continues to evolve and expand its reach, this revolutionary therapy offers hope for those grappling with treatment-resistant depression.

If you think TMS could be the right solution for you or a loved one, contact our team today for more information or to schedule an initial appointment.

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