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A new wave of treatments that stimulate the brain with electricity are showing promise on patients and in clinical trials.

Jacinta O'Shea

In a new episode of The Conversation Weekly podcast, three experts (including the Department of Psychiatry's Professor Jacinta O'Shea) and one patient talk about the history of treating mental illness, how new technology and deeper understanding of the brain are leading to better treatments and where the neuroscience of mental illness is headed next.

Professor O'Shea, a neuroscientist described her study of a non-invasive technique for stimulating the brain with electricity, called transcranial magnetic stimulation.

She said:

“If you place a ferromagnetic coil on the scalp and pass a rapidly changing electrical current through that coil, it will induce an electric field that passes painlessly through the skull and into the brain tissue underneath."

As with deep brain stimulation, these electrical fields can help people overcome mental health issues like depression.

Read the full article on The Conversation website

Oxford is a subscribing member of The Conversation. Find out how you can write for The Conversation.

NIHR OXFORD HEALTH BIOMEDICAL RESEARCH CENTRE NEWS

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