Scientists zap ‘voices’ from schizophrenia sufferers » Manila Bulletin Lifestyle

Manila Bulletin Philippines

Breaking News from the Nation's leading newspaper

Tempo

Online Newspaper

Showbiz and Celebrity News

Sports News

World News
News Asia

Scientists zap ‘voices’ from schizophrenia sufferers

Published

By Agence France-Presse

Scientists have pinpointed a part of the brain where “voices” torment schizophrenia sufferers, and partially muted them with magnetic pulse treatment, a team reported on Tuesday.

More than a third of sufferers treated with magnetic pulses in a patient trial experienced “significant” relief, the scientists said in a statement.

Flickr via Dejenee Shiflet / MANILA BULLETIN

Flickr via Dejenee Shiflet / MANILA BULLETIN

“We can now say with some certainty that we have found a specific anatomical area of the brain associated with auditory verbal hallucinations in schizophrenia,” the team said.

“Secondly, we have shown that treatment with high frequency TMS (Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation) makes a difference to at least some sufferers.”

Further research must be done to confirm the usefulness of TMS as a treatment in the longer term.

The results of the trial, not yet published in a scientific journal, were presented in Paris at a conference of the European College of Neuropsychopharmacology.

The trial compared 26 schizophrenic patients who received active TMS to 33 patients who received dummy or placebo treatment.

The first group was given a series of magnetic pulses over two sessions a day for two days to the part of the brain’s temporal lobe associated with language.

Two weeks later, participants were evaluated on the voices they were hearing. Nearly 35 percent of the TMS patients reported a “significant” improvement.

“Hearing voices” can be one of the most disturbing symptoms for people with schizophrenia and those close to them.

According to the World Health Organization, schizophrenia affects more than 21 million people worldwide.

Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Related Posts