rTMS: Hope for persistent depression - VA Eastern Colorado Health Care System
Attention A T users. To access the menus on this page please perform the following steps. 1. Please switch auto forms mode to off. 2. Hit enter to expand a main menu option (Health, Benefits, etc). 3. To enter and activate the submenu links, hit the down arrow. You will now be able to tab or arrow up or down through the submenu options to access/activate the submenu links.

VA Eastern Colorado Health Care System

Menu
Menu
Veterans Crisis Line Badge
My HealtheVet badge
EBenefits Badge
 

rTMS: Hope for persistent depression

rTMS: Hope for persistent depression

rTMS: Hope for persistent depression

By Shawn Fury
Thursday, January 2, 2020

Major depression is one of the most common mental disorders in the United States and carries the heaviest burden of disability among mental and behavioral disorders, according to the National Institute of Mental Health. Many Veterans are no stranger to experiencing depression. In fact, “in 2008, VA estimated about one in five had serious symptoms that suggest the need for further evaluation for major depression and one in eight have major depression.” (VA Office of Research and Development, September 2016).

While depression is a treatable condition, standard treatments aren't always effective for everyone. A recently approved procedure known as Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (rTMS) is now available for patients. VA Eastern Colorado Health Care System (ECHCS) has taken steps to make the best possible depression treatments available and now offers rTMS treatment for Veterans.

rTMS is a noninvasive procedure that uses powerful magnetic fields to stimulate nerve cells in the brain, according to Dr. James Haug, a psychiatrist at the Rocky Mountain Regional VA Medical Center. Through this procedure, it’s possible to stimulate activity in areas where it is suppressed in depression. rTMS is generally well tolerated. Mild side effects may include lightheadedness, headache, twitching, or discomfort at the site of treatment. These typically improve shortly after a treatment session and decrease over time with additional sessions.

Introducing rTMS treatment at ECHCS “shows our commitment to providing the most up-to-date advanced treatments for depression,” Haug added.

For those whose depression symptoms haven’t improved with standard mental health treatments, rTMS may be a viable option. Talk with your VA mental health provider for more information or referral for rTMS treatment.

Share



Get Updates

Subscribe to Receive
Email Updates