Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is a noninvasive procedure that uses magnetic fields to stimulate nerve cells in the brain to improve symptoms of depression.
This treatment for depression involves delivering repetitive magnetic pulses, so it's called repetitive TMS or rTMS.
How it works
During an rTMS session, an electromagnetic coil is placed against your scalp near your forehead. The electromagnet painlessly delivers a magnetic pulse that stimulates nerve cells in the region of your brain involved in mood control and depression. The stimulation appears to ease depression symptoms and improve mood.
Why it's done
Depression is a treatable condition, but for some people, standard treatments aren't effective. Repetitive TMS is typically used when standard treatments such as medications and talk therapy (psychotherapy) don't work.
Repetitive TMS is a noninvasive form of brain stimulation used for depression. unlike electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), rTMS doesn't cause seizures or require sedation with anesthesia.
Generally, rTMS is considered safe and well-tolerated. However, it can cause some side effects.
Common side effects
Scalp discomfort at the site of stimulation
Tingling, spasms or twitching of facial muscles
Uncommon side effects
Serious side effects are rare. They may include:
Mania, particularly in people with bipolar disorder
Hearing loss if there is inadequate ear protection during treatment
How you prepare
Before having rTMS, you may need a:
Physical exam and possibly lab tests or other tests
Psychiatric evaluation to discuss your depression
These evaluations help make sure that rTMS is safe and a good option for you.
Before your first appointment
Repetitive TMS isn't invasive, doesn't require anesthesia and can be performed on an outpatient basis.
Before considering treatment, check with your health insurance company to see whether rTMS is covered. Your policy may not cover it.
What you can expect
Repetitive TMS is usually done in a doctor's office or clinic. It requires a series of treatment sessions to be effective. Generally, sessions are carried out daily, five times a week for four to six weeks.
Before Your First Treatment
- You'll be taken to a treatment room,
- An electromagnetic coil will be placed against your head You'll also feel a tapping sensation on your forehead. This part of the process is called mapping.
- Your doctor will determine the amount of magnetic energy needed
During each treatment
- You'll sit in a comfortable chair, wearing ear plugs, with the magnetic coil placed against your head.
- When the machine is turned on, you'll hear clicking sounds and feel tapping on your forehead.
- The procedure will last about 40 minutes, and you'll remain awake and alert.
After each treatment
You can return to your normal daily activities after your treatment.
Typically, between treatments, you can expect to work and drive.
If rTMS works for you, your depression symptoms may improve or go away completely.
Symptom relief may take a few weeks of treatment.
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to have an Assessment with one of our Doctors/PNP to see
if you are right Candidate for Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation ( TMS ) Treatment.
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