Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation TMS
Since the 1980s, transcranial magnetic stimulation has been used to study the nerve fibers that carry information about movements from the brain to the spinal cord and onto the muscles. In the late 1990s physicians began to explore the therapeutic potential of transcranial magnetic stimulation for the treatment of a variety of diseases, with depression being the most thoroughly studied to date. Since then, more than 20 randomized, controlled trials studying transcranial magnetic stimulation as a treatment for depression have been published by investigators throughout the world.
In 2008, NeuroStar TMS (transcranial magnetic stimulation) Therapy was FDA-cleared for patients suffering from depression who have not achieved satisfactory improvement from prior antidepressant medications. Using pulsed magnetic fields, transcranial magnetic stimulation therapy stimulates the part of the brain thought to be involved with mood regulation.
TMS is a short outpatient procedure, performed in your psychiatrist’s office under their supervision while you remain awake and alert. The typical initial course of treatment is about 37 minutes daily over 4—6 weeks.
How TMS Works
NeuroStar TMS® is a short outpatient procedure performed right in a psychiatrist’s office. The treating clinician uses a treatment coil to send pulsed magnetic fields, similar in type and strength to those produced by a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) machine, to the part of your brain thought to control mood.
TMS is a highly targeted treatment reaching 2-3 centimeters into the brain, directly beneath the treatment coil. These magnetic pulses produce very small electrical currents that cannot be felt by a patient. These small electric currents can cause the neurons (brain cells) to fire or become active and lead to the release of neurotransmitters (the brain’s chemical messengers).
Covered by Insurance
TMS is covered by some healthcare providers. Check with yours to see if you are covered.
* Check with your insurance provider