> Therapy for treatment-resistant depression in which patients have failed with three or more antidepressant drugs.
> US FDA approved for use in major depressive disorder over a decade ago.
How TMS Works
Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) delivers high frequency magnetic pulses in short intervals to the brain over 20-30 minutes. These magnetic pulses alter neural activity in depression centers of the brain, hence altering dysfunctional patterns in the brain. TMS can be used to augment medications or psychotherapy, or as an alternative treatment.
Candidates for TMS
Patients who have failed to achieve desired results with three or more antidepressant drugs. Treatment-resistance is a common problem, affecting approximately 30% of depression patients. TMS has been show to be up to 70% effective in improving depression within those found to be treatment-resistant to medications.
- No anesthesia
- Little side effects: most common a mild headache during or after treatment, dizziness, or lightheadedness
- No "recovery time", so patients are able to drive and resume normal activity following TMS therapy
- 50-70% of patients who have tried and failed with medications see positive results
- 30-50% of patients experience full remission
- Many patients see a noticeable difference within three weeks