Electroconvulsive therapy (ECT) may be used to treat severe depression or depression that doesn't
get better with medicine and counseling or therapy.
Other types of brain
stimulation have not been well studied and may be expensive. They usually are
considered only if other treatment doesn't work. They include:
- Deep brain stimulation. A device that uses electricity to
stimulate the brain is put in your head. It is used for Parkinson's disease but
has not been well studied for depression.
- Vagus nerve stimulation. A generator the size of a pocket watch
is placed in your chest. Wires go up from the generator to the vagus nerve in
your neck. The generator sends tiny electric shocks through the vagus nerve to
- Transcranial magnetic stimulation. An electromagnet is placed
on your head. It sends magnetic pulses that stimulate your brain.
Complementary therapies are sometimes used for
depression. Always tell your doctor if you are using any of them. These therapies include:
Kathleen Romito, MD - Family Medicine
Lisa S. Weinstock, MD - Psychiatry
January 11, 2013
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