A non-invasive treatment for depression is the first of its kind in the Four States, and medical professionals are seeing positive results.
“I had gone through most of the medications available and none of them worked,” says Ted Sager, TMS patient.
Ted Sager went through 16 antidepressants — none of them having an affect on his depression. But a new kind of treatment now offered at the Ozark Center in Joplin is changing all that.
“Some of the problems I’ve had in the past just aren’t there anymore. I got to bed and I sleep well and I wake up well. I eat a little bit too much, but that’s alright,” says Ted Sager.
“It’s called Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation,” says Dr. Steven Kory, Ozark Center psychiatrist.
Or TMS for short. The therapy is for patients who are battling depression and are drug resistant or have seen no results with other medications or treatments. It uses a pulsed magnetic field, similar to technology of an mri machine, that stimulates nerves in the part of the brain that controls mood.
“That electrical field will then cause the release of neurotransmitters, which helps in the treatment of depression,” says Dr. Steven Kory.
“As far as pain goes there is none. It’s noisy. You don’t watch television generally, but it’s not bad,” says Ted Sager.
Five days a week, for 6 weeks, the patient will get TMS therapy for 45 minutes a session. For Ted, it’s helped him find something he had long missed when nothing else seemed to work — he got his good days back.
“I would have my bad days, and more bad days than good, and now, occasionally I still have my down days, but I get along very well with it,” says Sager.
The Ozark Center started using the treatment back in the summer. They say 33 percent of patients will be in full remission of depression at the end of the 6 week treatment–meanwhile 54 percent of patients will see some improvement by the end of the treatment course.