TMS Therapy TMS Centers of New York blog 1
A Few Words about Depression

Major depression is a serious medical illness that affects approximately 16.1 million Americans. Depression can cause ongoing sadness that changes how a person thinks, feels, and acts every day. While medication can help manage symptoms for many people, it is estimated that approximately 4 million patients do not benefit from taking standard antidepressant medication.

Depression Facts:

  • Women are more likely than men to suffer from depression
  • Depression is a leading cause of disability worldwide
  • Depression has no racial, ethnic, or socioeconomic boundaries
  • Researchers estimate that by the year 2030, depression will be the leading cause of disease burden—impact on length and health of lives—worldwide.

What causes depression?

While the exact cause of depression is not known, the leading scientific theory is that it is caused by an imbalance of the brain’s neurotransmitters, which are chemical messengers that send signals between brain cells.

While antidepressant drugs work for many people, some still do not receive adequate treatment. For these patients, the effects of depression can still be debilitating. These patients need a proven, safe depression treatment option.

What are the symptoms of depression?

According to the World Health Organization’s International Classification of Diseases, depression is diagnosed when an individual is experiencing a depressed mood, a loss of interest or enjoyment, and reduced energy leading to diminished activity. Other common depression symptoms include:

  • Reduced concentration or attention
  • Reduced self-esteem and self-confidence
  • Ideas of guilt and unworthiness
  • Bleak and pessimistic view of the future
  • Disturbed sleep
  • Diminished appetite
  • Ideas of self-harm or suicide

If you feel you are experiencing any of these depression symptoms, contact your doctor and ask about your depression treatment options.

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Tips about Depression Therapy & Treatments

What is major depression?

Depression is a serious medical illness that lasts around 14 days or more and hinders with a person’s ability to perform daily tasks and enjoy those activities that previously looked pleasing.

Depression a serious disease. Is it?

Yes. According to the United States National Institute of Mental Health “Depression is characterized by a combination of symptoms that interfere with a person’s ability to work, sleep, study, eat, and enjoy once-pleasurable activities. Major depression is disabling and prevents a person from functioning normally.” As a matter of fact, depression results in pain and suffering not only to the patient, but also to their loved ones. Depression is considered a lethal disease leading to an overwhelming death rate of more than 1 million deaths per year from suicide. Besides being a huge economic burden, depression is a leading cause of disease burden and disability worldwide. By the year 2030, depression can be the main cause of disease burden around the globe as the researchers estimate.

What are the symptoms of depression?

WHO’s International Classification of Diseases maintains that when a person experiences a depressed mood, a loss of interest or enjoyment, and reduced energy leading to diminished activity, depression is diagnosed. Other common depression symptoms include:

  • Reduced level of concentration or attention
  • Reduced self-esteem and self-confidence
  • Ideas of guilt and unworthiness
  • Bleak & pessimistic view of the future
  • Experiencing disturbed sleep
  • Less or diminished appetite
  • Suicidal thoughts or ideas of self-harm

If you experience any of the above depression symptoms, contact your physician and inquire about your different depression treatment options.

Is there a cure for depression?

There is no known cure for depression. Having said this, many patients can lead normal lives and remain symptom free by choosing the correct and effective treatment option.

Are there any approved treatments for depression?

In order to treat depression, both the non-medicine as well as drug therapies are available. Initial treatment for depression is done with the help of psychotherapy (talk therapy) and antidepressant medication administered together. Although antidepressants might be effective for a few patients, they do not suit everyone. Additionally, antidepressants often ends up in unwanted side effects. Many patients don’t receive adequate benefit from antidepressant medication and/or may not tolerate the side effects caused by them. For these patients, there are alternative treatments available that involve the use of a medical device. These treatments include most importantly transcranial magnetic stimulation therapy (TMS), electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) and vagus nerve stimulation (VNS).

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Myths vs. Facts about TMS Therapy

MYTH #1: NeuroStar Advanced Therapy is an Experimental or Investigational Treatment.
FACT: NeuroStar Advanced Therapy has been approved by FDA since 2008 as a safe and effective treatment, which is supported with most clinical studies for TMS in depression and 23 research publications.

MYTH #2: NeuroStar Advanced Therapy is not covered by Insurance.
FACT: NeuroStar Advanced TMS therapy  has a widespread insurance coverage and reimbursed by most commercial and government health plans, including Medicare and Tricare.

MYTH #3: NeuroStar Advanced Therapy is Inconvenient and Hard to Find.
FACT: NeuroStar Advanced Therapy is an FDA-cleared TMS treatment widely available in the U.S. delivered in 19-37 minutes. There are over 550 NeuroStar doctors located in 49 states. NeuroStar treatment is performed right in the doctor’s office in a spa-like chair.

MYTH #4: TMS is the same as Electro-Convulsive Therapy (ECT).
FACT: Unlike TMS, ECT involves general anesthesia and is considered an invasive treatment. It can produce side effects that are not associated with TMS treatment, such as memory loss, confusion and nausea.

MYTH #5: NeuroStar Advanced Therapy has Many Negative Side Effects.
FACT: NeuroStar Advanced Therapy provides benefits without the side effects often associated with antidepressant medication. The most common side effect is temporary pain or discomfort at or near the treatment site that usually lasts only in the first week of treatment.

MYTH #6: NeuroStar Advanced Therapy can be used to Treat Depression after One Antidepressant has Failed, but not Multiple.
FACT: NeuroStar Advanced Therapy may be an appropriate depression treatment for people who have attempted one or multiple depression medications yet remain symptomatic.

MYTH #7: “Deep TMS” or “An Improved Version of TMS” works better than other TMS Treatments.
FACT: NeuroStar treats right at the source. It offers precise coil placement for consistent repeatable treatment to ensure people receive the right dose at the right location every time. Data does not support depth of treatment is better or improved.

MYTH #8: A Helmet and Mouth Guard must be worn during a NeuroStar Treatment Session.
FACT: NeuroStar is an easy, in-office experience that does not require a cap, helmet, or mouth guard. During treatment, the patient remains awake, alert, and comfortably reclined in a spa-like chair. Brain is painlessly activated by easy transmission of magnetic energy through skin and skull. No anesthesia or sedation is necessary.

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How is TMS Therapy different from other systems?

How is NeuroStar different from other systems?

Precision is vital with TMS therapy because if treatment is off by just 1 mm, up to 40% of the specified dosage will be lost. In order to confirm the most accurate treatment each time, only NeuroStar incorporates a contoured coil so that it fits the form of your head, and patented precision technologies including:

  • MT Assist technology to measure magnetic field level
  • 3D Positioning for repeatable and accurate treatment (the full dose every time)
  • Contact Sensing to confirm you receive the total prescribed dose each time.

It’s also made within the US and doesn’t require headgear, mouth guard, or the other intrusive equipment like other TMS therapy systems.

Is your doctor suggesting a TMS system besides NeuroStar?

Ask the following inquiries to confirm you’re getting the treatment available which is the best:

  • How does it make sure the most precise level of dosing?
  • How does it ensure precise positioning in every treatment session?
  • How does it minimize stimulation of unrelated brain tissue?
  • How often have people stopped treatment before completion?
  • Are the results proven better than NeuroStar?

When the remission will be achieved and how long will it last?

Large number of patients reported a big improvement in depression symptoms or complete removal after 4 to six weeks of NeuroStar treatment. NeuroStar’s claim that only their treatment lasts over 12 months, is supported by available data.