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What are side effects of transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS, or rTMS) for depression?

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This procedure for treatment-resistant depression sends bursts of energy from electromagnets to specific areas of the brain. TMS seems to have few risks and side effects. Some people feel muscle contractions in the scalp. Rarely, TMS causes headaches or dizziness. But no evidence suggests that it affects the memory, like electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) sometimes can. TMS could cause a seizure, but it’s very rare.

SOURCES: American Psychiatric Association, , 2000. Avery, D.H., "A Controlled Study of Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation in Medication-Resistant Major Depression," , August 31, 2005. Cadieux, R.J. , December 1998; vol. 58: pp. 2059-62. Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance web site, "Finding Peace of Mind: Treatment Strategies for Depression and Bipolar Disorder" and "New Technologies in the Treatment of Mood Disorders." Fochtmann, L.J. and Gelenberg, A.J. , Winter, 2005; vol 3: pp 34-42. Holtzheimer, P.E. et al., "Focal Brain Stimulation for Treatment-Resistant Depression: Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation, Vagus-Nerve Stimulation, and Deep-Brain Stimulation," , February 2005; vol 12: pp 57-64. Keller, M.B., , 2005; vol. 66 (supp. 8): pp 5-12. Mayberg, H.S. et al., "Deep brain stimulation for treatment-resistant depression," , March 3, 2005; vol 45: pp 651-660. Stanford, A.D."Magnetic Seizure Therapy and Other Convulsive Therapies," , October 2005; vol 12: pp 44-50. Stimmel, G., "Options for Treatment-resistant Depression," , July 2002; vol 19.









Practice Guideline for the Treatment of Patients with Major DepressionBiological PsychiatryAmerican Family PhysicianFocusPrimary PsychiatryJournal of Clinical PsychiatryNeuronPrimary PsychiatryPsychiatric Times

WebMD: "Vagus Nerve Stimulation (VNS) for Depression."

Reviewed by Joseph Goldberg on May 11, 2018

SOURCES: American Psychiatric Association, , 2000. Avery, D.H., "A Controlled Study of Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation in Medication-Resistant Major Depression," , August 31, 2005. Cadieux, R.J. , December 1998; vol. 58: pp. 2059-62. Depression and Bipolar Support Alliance web site, "Finding Peace of Mind: Treatment Strategies for Depression and Bipolar Disorder" and "New Technologies in the Treatment of Mood Disorders." Fochtmann, L.J. and Gelenberg, A.J. , Winter, 2005; vol 3: pp 34-42. Holtzheimer, P.E. et al., "Focal Brain Stimulation for Treatment-Resistant Depression: Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation, Vagus-Nerve Stimulation, and Deep-Brain Stimulation," , February 2005; vol 12: pp 57-64. Keller, M.B., , 2005; vol. 66 (supp. 8): pp 5-12. Mayberg, H.S. et al., "Deep brain stimulation for treatment-resistant depression," , March 3, 2005; vol 45: pp 651-660. Stanford, A.D."Magnetic Seizure Therapy and Other Convulsive Therapies," , October 2005; vol 12: pp 44-50. Stimmel, G., "Options for Treatment-resistant Depression," , July 2002; vol 19.









Practice Guideline for the Treatment of Patients with Major DepressionBiological PsychiatryAmerican Family PhysicianFocusPrimary PsychiatryJournal of Clinical PsychiatryNeuronPrimary PsychiatryPsychiatric Times

WebMD: "Vagus Nerve Stimulation (VNS) for Depression."

Reviewed by Joseph Goldberg on May 11, 2018

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How can magnetic seizure therapy (MST) help with treating depression?

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