Weak, but complex pulsed magnetic fields may reduce depression following traumatic brain injury

Percept Mot Skills. 1996 Oct;83(2):491-8. doi: 10.2466/pms.1996.83.2.491.


Many patients who display psychological depression following a traumatic brain injury do not respond completely to antidepressant drugs. We hypothesized that this type of depression is strongly correlated with subclinical, complex partial seizure-activity within the hippocampal-amygdaloid region that continues for months to years after apparent neurological and behavioral "recovery." Four depressed patients who had sustained traumatic brain injuries and who exhibited mild to moderate brain impairment according to standardized tests received 30 min. of weak (1 microT) burst-firing magnetic fields across the temporal lobes once per week for 5 weeks. There was a significant improvement of depression and reduction of phobias while physical symptoms and other complaints were not changed.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Amygdala / physiopathology
  • Arousal / physiology
  • Brain Concussion / physiopathology
  • Brain Concussion / psychology
  • Brain Concussion / therapy*
  • Brain Damage, Chronic / physiopathology
  • Brain Damage, Chronic / psychology
  • Brain Damage, Chronic / therapy
  • Depressive Disorder / physiopathology
  • Depressive Disorder / psychology
  • Depressive Disorder / therapy*
  • Electromagnetic Fields*
  • Feasibility Studies
  • Female
  • Hippocampus / physiopathology
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neurocognitive Disorders / physiopathology
  • Neurocognitive Disorders / psychology
  • Neurocognitive Disorders / therapy*
  • Temporal Lobe / physiology
  • Treatment Outcome