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HeadWay Issue #202 Theta Burst Stimulation, Depression, and Migraine
June 21, 2021
In this issue:
Theta Burst Stimulation, Depression, and Migraine
Recently at Headache and Migraine News
Say what?! Neural Pathways
Theta Burst Stimulation, Depression, and MigraineAlthough many have been helped by non-invasive devices designed to fight migraine, the research still has a long way to go. Theta burst stimulation may possibly be a step forward.
You may already be familiar with TMS (transcranial magnetic stimulation), a therapy that was approved in the USA for migraine in 2013. Theta burst stimulation (TBS) is a type of TMS.
"Theta" refers to the range of EEG waves between 4-7Hz. TBS applies patterned bursts of stimulation in the theta range.
The practical advantage of TBS seems to be that you can apply a lower stimulation for a shorter period of time and receive a similar or even better effect.
In 2018, the FDA cleared a TBS treatment from MagVenture for major depressive disorder. According to the company, this essentially meant that treatment time dropped from 37 minutes to 3.
One of the recent studies for migraine used iTBS (intermittent TBS), comparing it to a sham treatment. Although the initial improvement lost some ground after a few weeks, at 12 weeks the iTBS group still showed a significant improvement.
The Minneapolis VA Health Care System is interested in TBS for traumatic brain injury. If you're interested in participating in this study, check the information here.
The US Department of Veteran Affairs is also running TMS trials, including a trial for phantom limb pain using TBS.
TBS and other forms of TMS do indeed "stimulate" the brain, and so are even researched as ways to cut down on "brain fog" (another common migraine symptom), or even to improve the function of the brain overall (cognition). You may be hearing more about TBS and similar treatments for migraine in the years ahead.
Recently at Headache and Migraine NewsHere are a few recent articles from Headache and Migraine News that you might find helpful.
Say what?! Neural PathwaysTBS is said to stimulate the brain and actually create new "neural pathways". But - what exactly are neural pathways?
Mirriam-Webster puts it simply: "a series of connected nerves along which electrical impulses travel in the body". Basically, these are the pathways that "light up" when you think, and they're typically created and strengthened when you're learning new things and trying out new skills. So why not try something new today?
Thanks for reading! Remember, if you have feedback or ideas for future issues, visit the HeadWay MailRoom. Your password is nomoache.
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