By: Mark S. George, M.D. [Distinguished Professor of Psychiatry, Radiology and Neurosciences Director, Brain Stimulation Laboratory (BSL), Staff Physician, RH Johnson VA Medical Center, Charleston], Joseph J. Taylor, MD/PhD Student [MUSC], and E. Baron Short, MD, MSCR [Associate Professor, MUSC]
Brain Stimulation Laboratory (BSL), Psychiatry Department, Medical University of South Carolina (MUSC), Charleston, SC
These recent studies suggest that daily left prefrontal TMS over several weeks as a treatment for depression appears to not only have efficacy in rigorous randomized controlled trials, but is effective in real world settings, with remission in 30–40% of patients. The TMS antidepressant effect, once achieved, appears to be as durable as with other antidepressant medications or interventions. Much more research is needed, particular with issues such as the TMS coil location, stimulation intensity and frequency, and dosing strategy.