Bilateral sequential theta burst stimulation in depressed veterans with service related posttraumatic stress disorder: a feasibility study Academic Article uri icon

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  • Abstract Background Depression comorbid with posttraumatic stress disorder (PTSD) can be disabling and treatment resistant. Preliminary evidence suggests that repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS), may have a role in helping these patients. There are only few published studies using different rTMS paradigms including bilateral intermittent theta burst (iTBS) and low frequency rTMS. Methods In this small cohort observation study, we examined the efficacy of bilateral sequential theta-burst stimulation (bsTBS) in 8 treatment resistant depression (TRD) military veterans with PTSD comorbidity stemming from military service experience. Results bsTBS was generally well tolerated and resulted in 25% and 38% remission and response rates on Depression scores respectively; 25% remission and response rate on PTSD scores. Discussion This study demonstrates preliminary feasibility and safety of bsTBS in TRD with comorbid military service related PTSD. We concluded that this paradigm might hold promise as a therapeutic tool to help patients with TRD co-morbid with military service related PTSD. Further adequately powered studies to compare rTMS treatment paradigms in this patient group are warranted.


  • Vaithianathan, Thelepa
  • Blair, Mervin
  • Soares, Vanessa
  • Rybak, Yuri E
  • Palaniyappan, Lena
  • Richardson, Donald
  • Burhan, Amer M

publication date

  • December 2022