Psychiatric treatment evaluates brainwaves to personalize medications

May 14,2012

With dozens of medications available to treat depression, anxiety and other mental health conditions, most psychiatrists base treatments on conventional research and educated guesswork.

For Bryan Brown, the traditional approach took him down a long road to recovery. After years of trying different combinations of medications and a period of hospitalization, Brown still hadn’t found relief from depression.

Six years ago, he was referred to Tim Blumer, DO, who recommended a new treatment approach to help guide medication selection.

“By that time, I was willing to try anything,” said Brown. “Now I’m a firm believer.”

Brown sat through the 45- to 60-minute procedure, known as psychiatric EEG evaluation registry, or PEER Online. The test compared Brown’s brainwaves (measured during the EEG) to a database of EEG results that have been matched with treatments found to be effective for that specific brainwave pattern. With results in hand, Blumer prescribed medications that were most appropriate for Brown’s condition.

While Brown experienced relief following his first EEG and the prescribed medication, he still wasn’t where he wanted to be and decided to have a second EEG to better pinpoint the best medication for his specific needs.

“Once Dr. Blumer prescribed my current medication, I finally felt well after years of suffering,” said Brown. “I’ve been back in good mental health ever since.”

Recently, Brown noticed similar signs of anxiety and depression in his 14-year-old son and became concerned. That’s when he decided to schedule a visit for his son with Blumer, who is one of only two doctors in the entire country using PEER Online for children and adolescents.

“The test has improved and is even more accurate now than when I had it six years ago,” said Brown. “Once my son’s results were analyzed, he began the recommended medication and within weeks was back to his old self. I couldn’t be any happier that he didn’t have to go through what I did, with trial and error, to find a treatment that works.”

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