London- A new study held by the Kings College in London has found effective outcomes while stimulating the brain of patients who suffer from eating disorders and depression.

Eating disorders such as anorexia, are mental disorders that have intensively increased in the last decade. Many mental disorders are often treated with prescribed medication or psychotherapy, but researchers at King’s College in London have discovered magnets that could help patients with anorexia.

Anorexia nervosa, also known as anorexia is a serious mental health condition, which in severe cases can be life-threatening. It is characterised by self-induced starvation in which people try and reduce their weight as much as possible. Credit: The Medical Channel

A research group at King’s College led by postdoctoral researcher Jessica McClelland has evaluated anorexia patients before and after they underwent into several Repetitive Transcranial Stimulation or rTMS. A previous treatment approved for depression patients.

TMS delivers magnetic pulses to specific areas of the human brain. Gently tapping the head and altering brain activity in the nerve cells.

“We found that one session of TMS reduced the urge to restrict food intake, levels of feeling full and levels of feeling fat, as well as encouraging more prudent decision making. Taken together, these findings suggest that brain stimulation may reduce symptoms of anorexia by improving cognitive control over compulsive features of the disorder.” said lead author Jessica McClelland in the study.

The new technique is showing promise in depression, drug addiction and anorexia treatments. Magnetic coil’s are placed over a brain region that is known to be important for self-control and is normally underactive in people who suffer from anorexia.

Forty-nine patients, which include men and women, were given a single real or fake treatment. The tests done showed that patients who received the real treatment felt a much-led need to restrict food intake. Researchers also noted that the patients felt less full and less fat, giving the anorexics more control over their actions.

The results of the study suggest that brain stimulation may reduce symptoms of anorexia by improving cognitive control. Researchers hope that repeated treatment will help in a larger way.

The team is currently running a world-first trial, that involves 20 sessions of brain stimulation to patients, to improve eating disorder treatments and help patients get a full recovery from their disease.

Source: Daily Mail