Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation

At Cross Creek Hospital, we are proud to offer an innovative and effective new treatment option for individuals whose major depressive symptoms have not responded to prescription antidepressant medications.

NeuroStar transcranial magnetic stimulation, or TMS therapy, was approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2008. This treatment option involves the use of focused magnetic pulses to stimulate of areas of the brain that are underactive in individuals who have been diagnosed with major depressive disorder.

Without effective professional treatment, major depressive disorder can have a profoundly negative impact on an individual’s physical, psychological, spiritual, and socioeconomic wellbeing. In many cases, individuals who have developed major depressive disorder have experienced relief from their distressing symptoms via psychotherapy and certain prescription antidepressants. However, this form of treatment does not have a 100-percent success rate, and the only options for those whose symptoms were not relieved were to continue trying new different types of therapy and/or different medications.

Today, transcranial magnetic stimulation offers new hope for people who have had unsuccessful experiences with prescription antidepressant medications.

Who Can Participate in NeuroStar TMS Therapy?

Individuals must meet the following criteria in order to participate in transcranial magnetic stimulation therapy:

• Have been diagnosed with major depressive disorder
• NOT experiencing psychosis
• NOT abusing alcohol or other drugs
• Have been unsuccessfully treated with at least four prescription antidepressant medications from two separate classes.

Please note that some insurers require six unsuccessful attempts at medication treatment before they will pay for TMS therapy. Also, some providers may require that you have also had at least one unsuccessful experience with psychotherapy.

What Happens During TMS Therapy?

TMS therapy involves the use of targeted magnetic pulses that are delivered through a small coil that is placed on the patient’s head. People who are treated with transcranial magnetic stimulation therapy are awake and alert throughout the entire process and should expect to experience no negative effects on alertness or understanding.

The entire process, which typically takes about 37 minutes to complete, consists of four steps:

• The individual who is receiving treatment reclines in a comfortable treatment chair.
• The professional who is administering the therapy lightly places a small curved device that contains a magnetic coil onto the individual’s head.
• This device delivers focused magnetic stimulation directly to specific areas of the individual’s brain.
• When this process is complete, the patient can immediately resume normal activities.

While the transcranial magnetic stimulation therapy is occurring, the individual receiving the treatment, may feel a slight tapping sensation, and will hear a clicking sound. He or she may experience mild to moderate discomfort on or near the treatment area during the session, but this discomfort usually occurs only during the first week of treatment.

A standard course of treatment involves five therapy sessions per week for four to six weeks, for a total of 20 to 30 sessions. The process is usually performed in an office setting.

Success Rate of TMS

More than 25,000 patients have had successful experiences with transcranial magnetic stimulation therapy.

According to a study of 800 people who completed at least 20 TMS therapy sessions, 50 percent of those individuals experienced significant improvement, and 33 percent said that they were free of all symptoms by the end of their treatment.

For more information about TMS therapy, or to determine if you are eligible for this form of therapy, please contact Cross Creek Hospital at your convenience. We look forward to answering all of your questions and helping you to determine if transcranial magnetic stimulation is right for you.

TMS Therapy Media Coverage

Comedian, Neal Brenner, discusses his experiences with depression and how TMS Therapy was able to help him. Watch the interview below from Comedy Central’s The Daily Show.

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