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Light in the Darkness: Hope for Depression and Medication-Resistant Disorders

Medical treatments and interventions for mental health have come a long way from the elaborate surgeries, drugs and controversial interventions introduced in the 1900’s. In addition, there are a variety of organizations, centers, and hospitals committed to continuing advancements in technology and improving treatment modalities.

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CenterPointe Hospital is one such hospital that prides itself on being a “leader in behavioral health treatment and services.” These leaders are necessary, as struggles such as depression and anxiety increase in frequency and occurrence among individuals in our familial and social circles. Presently, depression rates among adult Americans are as high as 9% and continue to climb.

Those diagnosed with clinical depression may seek treatment from medical professionals and find some relief with the aid of antidepressants. Sadly, the negative side effects from ongoing treatment with pharmaceuticals often make it impossible for individuals to continue treatment. In addition, 25% of individuals that seek pharmaceutical interventions never experience relief from their pain, despite trying multiple medications. However, for depression, anxiety, and other medication-resistant disorders, there is hope.

CenterPointe offers rTMS , or Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation. Medical professionals in the latter part of the 1990’s began to conduct trials and studies on the possibility of transcranial magnetic stimulation as a treatment for depression utilizing the NeuroStar TMS Therapy System, which is non-invasive and classified as an outpatient procedure. Performed under the supervision of a doctor, this treatment requires no sedation so that the patient may remain awake and aware the duration of the procedure. This system is the first of its kind to have the seal of approval from the FDA. The technology involved, with relation to the non-invasive magnetic field, is comparable to that of an MRI and just as safe. If after consulting with a physician it is deemed that this is a beneficial treatment course, the patient can anticipate a four-six week treatment sequence. Each treatment lasts roughly 40 minutes in the outpatient setting, with normal activity able to continue immediately following treatment.

The NeuroStar TMS Therapy System begins by placing a treatment coil over the prefrontal cortex (the part of the brain recognized for affecting mood). Through this device, magnetic fields create small electric currents. These currents pinpoint the underutilized parts of the brain functioning poorly due to depression. Painlessly, these electric currents pass into the brain to stimulate the intended area. Stimulation in this region increases blood flow and raises glucose metabolism, which is believed to improve disposition.

The NeuroStar System boasts “significant, long-lasting improvement.” In an independent trial, it was discovered that those provided the “clinical trial version of the NeuroStar TMS System were four times more likely to achieve remission” from symptoms when matched against those receiving an imitation treatment. One of the first patients  at CenterPointe cleared for this treatment method suffered from extremely debilitating depression leaving her incapable of caring for her children and working. After a full course of the NeuroStar therapy, she could resume working and found herself in remission from depression even after eight months removed from the program. Insurance coverage for this procedure varies, with some commercial plans providing coverage.

If you or a loved one battles depression or other medication-resistant disorders, do not hesitate to contact CenterPointe Hospital for evaluation and screening. Additionally, if you feel this treatment is the right course for yourself or someone close to you, discuss this treatment option with your physician. If this approach is agreed upon, CenterPointe will accept referrals from other medical professionals for evaluation and screening. As the days advance, so do the possibilities for advancements in technology and new treatments. There is hope available and opportunity for debilitating mental illnesses to become a thing of the past. For more information on this treatment option or to inquire about a free consultation, call CenterPointe at (314) 210-7508.

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