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Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation For the Treatment of Major Depressive Disorder In Adolescents and Young Adults

By Andrea Carlsen, Jill Mandel, Gregory Toso | May 2018

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Objective: To assess the effectiveness of TMS in Adolescents and Young Adults with MDD

Background: Teen and young adult depression is a common problem. Approximately 20% of teens will experience depression before adulthood. This population is associated with a 12-fold risk of suicide, an increase in substance abuse, and limited success in school, career and relationships.

Methods: 46 patients safely completed TMS therapy using the NeuroStar device. The age range was 15 to 87. Stimulation parameters included left high frequency (10 Hz, 120% of MT) or bilateral low frequency (1 Hz, 110% of MT). The number of sessions ranged from 23 to 50. Patients were assessed pre- and post-acute course using the BDI and/or the BDI-II scales. Patients with a minimum 50% score reduction were considered responders. Remitters had an end BDI score </= to 10 and/or a BDI-II score </= to 13.

Results: Patients in Group I (15-25 years-of-age) showed a response rate of 80% (12/15) and remission rate of 66.7% (10/15) using the BDI I and/or BDI II rating scales. Patients in Group II (>26 years- of-age) showed a response rate of 74.2% (23/31) and a remission rate of 54.8% (17/31) using the same scales.

Conclusions: TMS Therapy is a viable and safe treatment for MDD in Adolescents and Young Adults. Further study to include a larger sample size and defined inclusion and exclusion criteria is recommended.

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