Transcript How To Get Over Depression Using TMS Video



I’m Robert McMullen, I’m a Psychiatrist and I’m going to talk about how to get over depression using TMS (trans-cranial magnetic stimulation). 

A little background; I went to Georgetown medical school and then I did my residency at Columbia Presbyterian hospital and then most of my life I’ve specialized in using medication to treat difficult psychiatric illnesses and especially treatment-resistant depression both in unipolar patients and bipolar patients. These types of depression by definition very difficult to treat and to bring people all the way [Inaudible 00:59] and often we need four, five or six medications to really improve somebody and sometimes they are still not in their 100 percent, maybe they are in 80 percent or 90 percent. So when TMS came out, I obtained the machine in 2010 and was very surprised to find at least half of the patients that I treated came all the way to normal mood and 30 treatments even though they had never been in a normal mood in their life. That’s really shocking! Because they’ve failed that five or ten different medicine over many years, what’s the odds that the next medicine is going to bring them to a completely normal mood? Perhaps if you use the [Inaudible 01:57] inhibitor, it would work better than the previous medications but the odds of bringing them all the way to normal is very low- less than 2%.

How To Get Over Depression Using TMS So this was quite surprising and a thing of surprise was that I ruled out 5 patients who were a little bit more difficult unusual to get out of their depression like they took 4 years or 53months spread out over time before they really stayed in a normal mood. I wrote this patients up about a year after their treatment, all five of these people did not relapse till over 3 years later and one of them has gone over four years without relapse and then when they relapse, they just need five or six treatments usually and they are back to normal. It’s important when you get TMS to be still on your medication, especially for medication working. So we do much better in private practice treatment of depression than the studies that are done in the hospitals and it seems to be primarily because we leave them on their medication and in the studies, they often took them off all their medications so then the patient really is at the bottom.

You could even look upon TMS as an augmentation that’s really augmenting the anti-depressant effect because you add this on to the standard treatment to bring them all the way to normal and then they stay on the medication after the treatment. What’s different about it is this augmentation often works a hundred percent… that all the other augmentation that you’ve tried; a little Lithium, a little thyroid, a little buliphy and so on did not bring them all the way to normal and then this often does and it stays. Frequently the patient will go as I said many months or few years without relapse. And few other people relapse every few months and then they come and get a treatment or two or three treatments and some unfortunately they have to have several treatments a year but they are still better and doing what they were suffering with before.

It’s really a revolution in psychiatry and it’s rather surprising that more people don’t know about it. I think there’s a number of reasons, I think psychiatrist don’t think of using technical machinery to treat people and it sounds weird to use a big magnet on the head and it’s a little difficult to convince people to do some new radical treatment that they’ve never heard of before and which takes up time that you have to do maybe 20 or 30 treatments.

If you want more information, feel free to call me on 212-362-9635