How does the TMS Therapy System Work?
During the treatment, the patient is seated in a reclined position in a comfortable treatment chair with the head supported in a relaxed position. The coil part of the TMS system will be positioned on the left front side of the head, over the part of the brain called the Left Dorsolateral Prefrontal Cortex (DLPFC). Short bursts of electricity are passed through the treatment coil, which in turn generate magnetic fields. The magnetic fields have the ability to pass unhindered through the scalp and create small electric currents in the targeted area of the brain. These electric currents depolarize or activate nerve cells in the region of stimulation. Clinical studies have demonstrated that repetitive magnetic stimulation of the DLPFC to be safe and effective in treating patients with depression.
Who are good Candidates?
TMS Therapy is
- FDA cleared for the treatment of Major Depressive Disorder
- Safe and effective
- Offered only by licensed physicians
- Covered by most primary insurance carriers
- Free from common antidepressant drug side effects
The TMS Therapy System is indicated for: Treatment of Major Depressive Disorder in adult patients who have failed to receive satisfactory improvement from prior antidepressant medication in the current episode. Current literature indicates that approximately 60% of all treated patients who meet the above criteria respond to the treatment by bettering their Hamilton depression rating score by 50% or more. The Hamilton Depression rating is a multiple item questionnaire used to provide an indication of depression. Approximately 35% of all treated patients are so-called remitters, bettering their Hamilton depression rating score to a score of 7 or less, meaning that they are depression free.
When Should TMS Therapy Not be Used?
- Does not affect cognitive function
- Does not require anesthetics
- Allows the patient to resume daily activities immediately
- Allows for treatment with or without antidepressants (determined by a physician)
The TMS Therapy System creates a magnetic field that could cause metal objects near the stimulation coil to move or get hot. Patients with non–removable magnetic-sensitive metals or metallic devices implanted in their head or in body parts near the stimulation coil should not receive therapy with the TMS.
NOTE: Standard amalgam dental fillings are not affected by the magnetic field and
are acceptable in patients.
Is TMS Safe?
Common side effects from antidepressants
- Blurred vision
- Dry mouth
- Weight gain
- Sexual dysfunction
Patients with a history of seizure or with a decreased threshold for seizure as a result of taking certain medications, sleep deprivation, high intake of caffeine, or other causes, have an increased risk of negative side effects from receiving TMS.
Patients should discuss with their doctor any history of seizure and should inform their doctor of any medications that they are currently taking so that any possible risk of lowered seizure threshold can be assessed. Patients with a history of seizure or with a potentially lowered threshold for seizure should not receive therapy with the TMS Therapy System without comprehensively discussing with their doctor the potential risks and benefits of receiving the TMS Therapy. Talk with your doctor for more information.
Are there any other precautions or side effects that I should be aware of?
TMS is free from common antidepressant side effects
- Pain at application site
Adverse effects and complications
- No serious adverse effects have been reported for the MagVita TMS Therapy System.
- Minor Scalp pain, headache, and burning sensation in the area of stimulation are the most commonly reported side effects during and shortly after treatment.
- Long term effects of exposure to a magnetic field are not known. Current evidence indicates that exposure to the type of magnetic fields produced by the coil does not present any significant risk of acute or long-term adverse effects.
- Worsening of depression and suicidal tendencies have been noted on rare occasions, although never with treatment using the MagVita TMS Therapy System. Patients should immediately report any such thoughts or feelings to their doctor during or after any treatment with the TMS Therapy System.