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The effects of repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation on body weight and food consumption in obese adults: A randomized controlled study

  • Se-Hong Kim
    Affiliations
    Department of Family Medicine, St. Vincent's Hospital, College of Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea, 93-6 Ji-dong, Paldal-gu, Suwon, Kyonggi-do, 442-723, Republic of Korea
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  • Ju-hye Chung
    Correspondence
    Corresponding author.
    Affiliations
    Department of Family Medicine, Uijeongbu St. Mary's Hospital, College of Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea, 271, Cheon Bo-ro, Uijeong bu-si, Gyeonggi-do, 480-717, Republic of Korea
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  • Tae-Hong Kim
    Affiliations
    Department of Emergency Medicine, College of Medicine, St. Paul's Hospital, College of Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea, Seoul, Republic of Korea
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  • Seong Hoon Lim
    Affiliations
    Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, College of Medicine, St. Vincent's Hospital, College of Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea, 93-6 Ji-dong, Paldal-gu, Suwon, Kyonggi-do, 442-723, Republic of Korea
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  • Youngkook Kim
    Affiliations
    Department of Rehabilitation Medicine, College of Medicine, Yeouido St. Mary's Hospital, College of Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea, Seoul, Republic of Korea
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  • Young-Mi Eun
    Affiliations
    Department of Family Medicine, St. Vincent's Hospital, College of Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea, 93-6 Ji-dong, Paldal-gu, Suwon, Kyonggi-do, 442-723, Republic of Korea
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  • Yun-Ah Lee
    Affiliations
    Department of Family Medicine, St. Vincent's Hospital, College of Medicine, The Catholic University of Korea, 93-6 Ji-dong, Paldal-gu, Suwon, Kyonggi-do, 442-723, Republic of Korea
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      Highlights

      • 8 sessions of HF-rTMS over the left DLPFC was effective in weight loss and decreasing food intake in obese patients.
      • The observed weight loss in the present study was greater than our previously published findings with 4 sessions of rTMS.
      • rTMS treatment had beneficial effects on improving insulin resistance.
      • rTMS reduced cardiometabolic risks associated with obesity.

      Abstract

      Background

      Although some studies have reported significant reductions in food cravings following the single-session of repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS), there is little research on the effects of multi-session of rTMS on food consumption and body weight in obese subjects.

      Objective

      We conducted 4-week randomized, sham-controlled, single-blind, parallel-group trial to examine the effect of rTMS on body weight in obese adults.

      Methods

      Forty-three obese patients (body mass index [BMI] ≥25 kg/m2) aged between 18 and 70 years were randomized to the sham or real treatment group (21 in the TMS group and 22 in the sham treatment group). A total of 8 sessions of rTMS targeting the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (DLPFC) was provided over a period of 4 weeks. The primary outcome measure was weight change in kilograms from baseline to 4 weeks. Secondary endpoints included changes in anthropometric measures, cardiovascular risk factors, food intake, and appetite.

      Results

      Participants in the rTMS group showed significantly greater weight loss from baseline following the 8 session of rTMS (−2.75 ± 2.37 kg vs. 0.38 ± 1.0 kg, p < 0.01). Consistent with weight loss, there was a significant reduction in fat mass and visceral adipose tissue at week 4 in the rTMS group compared with the control group (p < 0.01). After the 8 sessions of rTMS, the TMS group consumed fewer total kilocalories and carbohydrates per day than the control group (p < 0.05).

      Conclusions

      8 sessions of HF rTMS delivered to the left DLPFC were effective in inducing weight loss and decreasing food intake in obese patients.

      Trial registration

      Clinical trial registered with the Clinical Trials Registry at http://cris.cdc.go.kr (KCT0002548).

      Keywords

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