Psychiatrists in Jerusalem and Istanbul collaborate on research

Science and Health

Herzog Medical Center in Jerusalem and Üsküdar University in Turkey have agreed to collaborate on carrying out advanced research in neuropsychiatry and other advanced technologies for diagnosis and treatment, organizing regional and international conferences together, and exchanging information.

Herzog Medical Center Director-General Dr. Kobi Haviv and Prof. Pinchas Danon, head of the hospital’s psychiatric department, recently flew to Istanbul to meet with the president of the Turkish university and his deputy.

“We discussed the accumulated knowledge and experience in Jerusalem and Istanbul in the treatment of various syndromes and illnesses from the fields of mental health with the help of innovative and ground-breaking technological means,” they said in a statement. “We also discussed collaborations in medical studies of trauma treatment with the help of brain stimulation.”

“In Israel, there is a high incidence of post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) in the population following military service, wars or terrorist attacks – [not to mention the trauma of Holocaust survivors],” Danon said. “In Turkey, there is a high incidence of PTSD related to earthquakes and also to terrorist events.”

“We found a strong desire among the Turks to learn from our accumulated experience in brain-stimulation treatments for patients with PTSD and also in the treatment of addictions with the help of brain stimulation and the treatment of smoking addicts,” he said. “They have great interest in the effects of brain stimulation on autism, while we learned about their studies at the Turkish university of innovative treatments for various mental illnesses. The meeting was exciting, and we decided to cooperate in organizing regional and international conferences.”

Jerusalem’s Herzog Medical and Turkey’s Üsküdar University collaborate on advanced psychiatric research. (credit: COURTESY OF HERZOG MEDICAL CENTER)


Collaborative research

Üsküdar is a nonprofit and private higher-education institution located in the urban setting of the large metropolis of Istanbul, which has nearly five million inhabitants. Its memory center was established to implement Turkey’s first “Brain check-up” and “Magnetic Stimulation Treatment,” or Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS).

The meeting with the heads of the university in Istanbul took place at the same time as the sixth international conference on imaging in psychiatry and neurology that was held in Istanbul. The event has been held since 2019, when participation was by Zoom during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“It was wonderful to be in Turkey without having to take part online and to meet hundreds of doctors and researchers in the fields of psychiatry and neurology from dozens of countries, including the US, Canada, Australia, China, Japan, Korea, Malaysia, England, France, Germany, Holland, Austria, Italy, Greece, and Azerbaijan,” Danon said.

Danon addressed the conference and led a session on the innovative technological uses in the diagnosis and treatment of major depression, obsessive-compulsive disorder, mania, and depression, using the Deep TMS helmet. The helmet, which came into use at the Herzog’s Clinical Research Center for Brain Sciences, was developed by Israeli medical-device company BrainsWay. It has been approved by the US Food and Drug Administration and Europe’s CE.

Herzog Medical Center was established 130 years ago. It is a leading teaching and training center in various academic settings for specialists in psychiatry, clinical psychology, social work, and for medical and nursing students.