Posted on November 18, 2019 by TMS Australia

Depression is Australia’s second largest mental illness, affecting 1 in 7 Australians at some point in life.1

It is also the first cause of non-fatal disability, and likely to become the first health concern in the world by 2030 according to the World Health Organisation.2

Treatments for depression include psychotherapy, antidepressants and brain stimulation techniques when available.

An effective non-invasive procedure is TMS. TMS is Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (or rTMS) and uses targeted magnetic pulses which activate positive mood pathways in the area of the brain that regulates mood. It is not ECT (shock therapy) as it doesn’t directly apply electricity to the brain. A TMS session lasts between 45 and 60 minutes, is mostly painless and does not require anaesthesia. Patients can drive home or return to work after a session.

TMS treatment for depression has been approved in Australia for 10 years and used primarily during hospital admission.

Dr Ted Cassidy co-founded the TMS Australia clinics to make TMS accessible to more Australians, in a convenient and safe outpatient setting that would offer the best protocols. “TMS is the new Prozac” Dr Cassidy says. “Patients can achieve great outcomes, with none of the side effects associated with antidepressants”.

Geoffrey, a recent TMS outpatient, has suffered from depression most of his life. He has tried many medications before undergoing TMS. Both Dr Ted Cassidy and Geoffrey were guests of Jacinta Tynan at Skynews and answered her questions.

SkyNews feature on the recent Medicare announcement on TMS therapy

References:

  1. Australian Bureau of Statistics. (2009). National Survey of Mental Health and Wellbeing: Summary of Results, 4326.0, 2007. ABS: Canberra
  2. World Health Organisation. (2008). The global burden of disease: 2004 update.