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Is Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation A New Treatment Of Bulimia Nervosa?

Date:
January 22, 2008
Source:
Psychotherapy And Psychosomatics
Summary:
Researchers report on a new modality of treatment for bulimia nervosa, transcranial magnetic stimulation, in Psychotherapy and Psychosomatics. Transcranial magnetic stimulation is a non-invasive, neurophysiological method, which affects cortical neurons with a short magnetic pulse. Bulimia nervosa (BN) is often associated with depressive symptoms and treatment with antidepressants has shown positive effects.

A group of investigators of the Innsbruck University (Austria) reports on a new modality of treatment for bulimia nervosa, transcranial magnetic stimulation. Transcranial magnetic stimulation is a non-invasive, neurophysiological method, which affects cortical neurons with a short magnetic pulse.

Bulimia nervosa (BN) is often associated with depressive symptoms and treatment with antidepressants has shown positive effects. A shared deficient serotonergic transmission was postulated for both syndromes. The left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex was argued to regulate eating behaviour and to be dysfunctional in eating disorders.

Fourteen women meeting DSM-IV criteria for BN were included in a randomised placebo-controlled double-blind trial. In order to exclude patients highly responsive to placebo, all patients were first submitted to a one-week sham treatment. Randomisation was followed by 3 weeks of active treatment or sham stimulation. As the main outcome criterion we defined the change in binges and purges. Secondary outcome variables were the decrease of the Hamilton Depression Rating Scale (HDRS), the Beck Depression Inventory (BDI) and the Yale-Brown Obsessive Compulsive Scale (YBOCS) over time.

The average number of binges per day declined significantly between baseline and the end of treatment in the two groups. There was no significant difference between sham and active stimulation in terms of purge behaviour, BDI, HDRS and YBOCS over time.

These preliminary results indicate that repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) in the treatment of BN does not exert additional benefit over placebo. A larger number of patients might clarify a further role of rTMS in the treatment of BN.

Journal references: Walpoth, M. ; Hoertnagl, C. ; Mangweth-Matzek, B. ; Kemmler, G. ; Hinterhφlzl, J. ; Conca, A. ; Hausmann, A. Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation in Bulimia Nervosa: Preliminary Results of a Single-Centre, Randomised, Double-Blind, Sham-Controlled Trial in Female Outpatients. Psychother Psychosom 2008;77:57-60


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The above story is based on materials provided by Psychotherapy And Psychosomatics. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

Psychotherapy And Psychosomatics. "Is Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation A New Treatment Of Bulimia Nervosa?." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 22 January 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/01/080117202807.htm>.
Psychotherapy And Psychosomatics. (2008, January 22). Is Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation A New Treatment Of Bulimia Nervosa?. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/01/080117202807.htm
Psychotherapy And Psychosomatics. "Is Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation A New Treatment Of Bulimia Nervosa?." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/01/080117202807.htm (accessed July 23, 2014).

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