Psycho-Babble Medication | about biological treatments | Framed
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Re: Vagus Nerve Stimulation

Posted by Eric on October 21, 1999, at 0:00:51

In reply to Vagus Nerve Stimulation, posted by Janice on October 19, 1999, at 22:25:20

I know the guy who started the VNS program for refractory depression. Dr. Mark George at MUSC in Charleston, SC is a neuropsychiatrist and radiologist there. I met him and he even physically did my rTMS therapy this past summer. He is in charge of the rTMS program at MUSC as well as the VNS program. In fact, they did the first VNS implant for refractory depression at MUSC. This guy is also doing a lot of research in developing the ability to image and map the brain using functional MRI scans, PET scans, SPECT scans, etc. It is very, very technical but this guy along with other neuroscientists are trying to develop the capability to take an image of a mentally ill person and diagnose them via imaging. I guess this might eventually replace old fashioned psychiatric interview type diagnostic methods. I am all for these new, more modern diagnostic methods they are trying to develop. Basically, what this guy is doing I think is melding neurological and radiological tools and knowledge with psychiatry to develop new ways of treatment and diagnosing mental illness.

I was told the VNS program is for "truly refractory" patients. Sounds to me VNS is for people who have failed ECT, MAOIs, rTMS, etc.

My experience with rTMS is the results are transint because a two week session is not enough. Perhaps if they perfected it and it was approved by the FDA, etc. and you could get rTMS treatment daily for several months straight I believe it might work great and "flick the switch." But my experience was two weeks of treatment was too short for a sustained effect. Basically, my impression of it was if you could get more of it over a sustained period it might really work.

Dr. George is one smart dude. MUSC at Charleston is a beautiful, peaceful place to get rTMS treatment by the way. I got rTMS treatment by day and then went to the beach for a few hours at nearby Folly beach. So it was like I was getting rTMS treatment PLUS natural light therapy at the same time LOL.




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