What is rTMS?
TMS stands for “Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation.” When the pulses are given in succession, it is referred to as “repetitive TMS” or “rTMS.” TMS is a medical procedure that works by delivering highly focused MRI-strength magnetic pulses to noninvasively (without surgery) stimulate the brain. The TMS treatment session is conducted using a small hand held device called a “treatment coil” that delivers energy to the brain using pulsed “magnetic fields.” These magnetic fields are similar to those used in magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) machines. Patients being treated with TMS do not require anesthesia or sedation. They remain awake and alert and return to work or their daily routine immediately after each treatment.
To receive rTMS, a doctor or technician will first place the treatment coil on your head. You may hear a repetitive clicking sound and possibly feel a tapping sensation on your scalp. The stimulator will be adjusted to give just enough energy to send electromagnetic pulses through your scalp to make your fingers twitch. The amount of energy required to make your thumb twitch half the time is called the “motor threshold.” Everyone has a different motor threshold and the treatments are given at an energy level that is based on the individual’s motor threshold. Once these technical settings are decided, you will have the rTMS positioned over the right side of your head. You will then receive a treatment that will last about 30-40 minutes. Once your rTMS session is completed, you will immediately begin your therapy session.
Where to find TMS practitioners?
Simply use your favorite search engine to find TMS practitioners near you. Since 2015, many are accepting insurance, but it is best to call them, ask if they accept your insurance, how many sessions it may take and the cost of each session. Then it might be good to inquire about current research with regard to the lasting effect of TMS. If TMS must be repeated, it may be good to inquire if that is also covered by insurance. Do your homework and research the TMS provider so that you have full confidence in them and that it is appropriate for you.
Note: VFU provides this comprehensive view of healing techniques for your convenience, but does not endorse nor recommend any specific technique. VFU does not guarantee results or outcomes from any of the materials listed on this website.