For nearly 20-30 percent of people who suffer from depression, antidepressants and psychotherapy will not be effective. The depression can be endless and debilitating. Many patients may try multiple medications and therapies with no symptom improvement. They may turn to electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) as a last-resort, which involves inducing seizures to stimulate the brain.
UMN researchers with MnDRIVE are offering a new option which could eliminate the need for ECT for many depression patients, and would provide considerable improvement in their symptoms.
The non-invasive brain therapy is called transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). It uses a magnetic coil within a helmet-like device to stimulate the brain with electric currents.