A new analysis shows that magnetic stimulation of the brain using the Neurostar Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation system, from Neuronetics, can reduce symptoms of Depression yet causes little disruption to sleep or arousal behaviour, in contrast to conventional drugs. Researchers carried out a secondary analysis of 301 patients at 23 sites to compare responses to transcranial magnetic stimulation therapy and placebo treatment in patients who do not respond properly to antidepressant drugs. Depression severity was rated with the Montgomery-Asberg Depression Rating Scale, the 24-item Hamilton Depression Scale (HAMD), and the Inventory of Depressive Symptoms-Self Report (IDS-SR).
As well as confirming the usefulness of TMS for Depression, the study showed that sleep difficulty did not differ between active and sham treatment. Results show no significant difference in the rates of insomnia or daytime sleepiness among those on placebo or TMS. In addition, patients on TMS were not more likely to request medication for anxiety or insomnia. See: "Left dorsolateral prefrontal transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS): Sleep factor changes during treatment in patients with pharmacoresistant major depressive disorder." Peter B. Rosenquist et al. Psychiatry Research, 27 September 2012 DOI:10.1016/j.psychres.2012.09.011