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RPS advertises unique study for teens battling depression

ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC) – Could magnets help teens battling depression? A Mayo Clinic doctor seems to think so and wants Rochester Public Schools to help test his theory.

Associate professor at the Mayo Clinic College of Medicine and Science and Director of Mayo Clinic Depression Center Paul Croarkin presented his idea to the district board Tuesday night.

“As a physiatrist my dream has always been if we could intervene early with neuro-science tools we may be able to spare a patient a lifetime of ineffective treatments,” Croarkin said.

It’s called “Repetitive Trans-cranial Magnetic Stimulation” and it’s a very different from other depression treatments currently available. The voluntary study would use NeuroStar, a technology similar to an MRI already FDA approved for adults to treat depression. This study would see if teens can benefit from it as well, perhaps even as an alternative to medication.

After Croarkin’s presentation, RPS signed off on allowing advertisement for the study in their electronic newsletter.

“So they can advertise it there, and if parents want their child to participate, they’ll reach out to Mayo,” RPS Superintendent Michael Muñoz said. “So really we are not involved in it, but just allowing them to advertise it.”

The study will go on for at least another 3 years and is already accepting applicants. Croarkin hopes to have at least 100 adolescent volunteers.

Beret Leone

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