Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) is an FDA-approved treatment for Major Depressive Disorder (MDD) for patients who are not satisfied with the results of standard drug therapy. Although this approval came on 2008, TMS has been under research and development for decades.
Up until now, the only two avenues for MDD treatment have been medication and electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), both with the help of psychiatric counseling.
MDD patients treated this way have to deal with the large number of systemic side effects of medication and ECT as well as the financial and emotional burden these side effects can cause.
NeuroStar TMS Therapy is a non-invasive, pinpoint focal treatment of the areas of the brain known to be responsible for mood and depression control. The NeuroStar TMS Therapy is similar to magnetic resonance imaging (MRI). It uses precisely targeted magnetic pulses Stimulates key areas of the brain that are underactive in patients with depression. Treatment is delivered in an office setting and the patient can resume daily activities immediately after treatment with minimal (if any) side effects.
TMS is based on the fact that a pulsing magnetic field will induce an electrical current. These electrical stimuli are enough to activate (depolarize) the brain cells in an area known to control mood and depression.
The Neurostar TMS Therapy System
The Neurostar TMS Therapy System is a computer-driven unit that generates high-intensity magnetic pulses through a magnetic coil that is placed over the treatment area. The Neurostar TMS Therapy System is composed of:
• A motor-driven treatment chair where the patient sits comfortably reclined during treatment
• A coil-positioning and headrest system that accurately uses external cranial landmarks for precise, targeted repeatable brain stimulation
• A computer console that controls the therapy as well as helps the physician determine the exact dosage of magnetic intensity for proper treatment. The computer console also has an interactive screen that is used during treatment
• A motor-driven coil support and positioning system
• A state-of-the art iron-core coil that delivers sequenced, pulsed magnetic stimulation to the treatment area
The NeuroStar TMS Therapy system is linked and constantly synchronized with a secondary computer that keeps track of the patient’s treatment and TMS prescription
NeuroStar TMS Therapy may not be right for everyone. Talk to a NeuroStar Specialist at our office about how this proven depression treatment can help and whether it is right for you.
Next: How TMS Works