Local nurse practitioner uses new tool to help fight veteran depression and anxiety

Military Matters

COLORADO SPRINGS — A new form of therapy is focusing on helping people cope with depression, anxiety and obsessive compulsive disorders.

“Its like MRI machine that generates electric magnetic pulses,” Amanda Batterbee, Nurse Practitioner and Owner of the North Springs Psychiatry said.

It’s called Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation, TMS for short, and it focuses on the pre-frontal lob of the brain and stimulates the nerve cells in the brain to improve symptoms of depression .

It is often used for patients when their anti-depressant medication is no longer working. Batterbee said she has also seen an increase in veterans using it to cope.

“I have a lot of veterans come back and say this changed their life,” Batterbee said.

Thomas Welch, an Air Force veteran of over 20 years said he decided to try the therapy.

“I wouldn’t say I am 100%, but I am a lot better than I was,” Welch explained. “I was very down on the lowest part in my life at that time.”

He said since doing the treatment he is able to listen to sad music without crying, something he said his depression constantly made happen.

“I’m only on one medication now and its not even a psych med. Its just for my stomach, but I was on 8 medications at one point,” Welch said.

Batterbee said the treatment and patient need to be consistent for a series of weeks. She said the patient will need to come in for a 20 minute treatment everyday for four weeks.

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