A Pilot Study of Accelerated Deep Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation Effects on Cognitive Functioning in Patients Diagnosed With Treatment Resistant Major Depressive Disorder

SOURCE: Psychiatry Research. 316:114750, 2022 Oct.

AUTHORS: Bahun I; Ivezic E; Dogas VV; Filipcic IS; Filipcic I

ABSTRACT: The purpose of this study was to assess cognitive functioning in patients diagnosed with major depressive disorder (MDD) treated with two different accelerated deep transcranial magnetic stimulation (dTMS) modalities as an add-on to stable pharmacotherapy. A total of 32 adult psychiatric inpatients diagnosed with treatment resistant MDD were allocated by stratified randomization into two groups: a group treated with dTMS twice a day during 2 weeks, and a group treated with dTMS twice a day during 3 weeks. Clinical psychologists assessed participants’ cognitive functions (memory, visuospatial functioning, executive functions, psychomotor speed, verbal fluency) via a battery of instruments, after the inclusion, and by the end of treatment.Our findings showed mild to moderate improvements in the majority of administered tests measuring different cognitive functions, meaning that patients achieved significantly better results by the end of the treatment compared to baseline, regardless of the duration of the treatment (2 or 3 weeks). No adverse effects on cognition were observed. The results seem promising in the context of treating the cognitive symptoms associated with functional recovery of patients suffering from depression.