What is Deep Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation?

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) is one of the newest and most exciting things happening in the medical world today. Even more recent than TMS, Deep Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (Deep TMS) has been introduced to the market as an innovative treatment for issues of cognitive or mental processes. Like its predecessor, Deep TMS is a noninvasive procedure used to treat several conditions, including depression, smoking cessation, obsessive compulsive disorder, etc.

What is TMS?

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation received FDA approval in 2008 as an effective treatment for drug-resistant depression. Since then, this brain stimulation therapy has been touted as one of the most promising medical innovations available today.

Through the use of short electric currents, TMS effectively ‘resets’ the neurons in areas of the brain associated with the specific impairment or disorder being treated. Following this procedure, the brain may return to normal functioning. It is thought that TMS may repair neural pathways responsible for disease.

What is Deep TMS?

dTMSBrainsway recently introduced Deep Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation to the world, receiving FDA clearance in January 2013. However, this treatment was actually first developed in 2001 and since then, numerous studies have been conducted on the efficacy and safety of Deep TMS as a treatment for depression and other brain disorders.

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation is only able to treat shallow or superficial areas of the brain. As the name implies, Deep Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation, is able to target areas that are located deep within the brain. Short magnetic pulses are applied through electromagnetic coils. These pulses create an electric field that activates the neurons in the intended area.

Deep Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation is administered by a helmet that is placed on the patient’s head. According to the Clinical TMS Society, the patient undergoes treatment for 15-20 minutes at a time and the treatment period is usually three to four weeks. Over these weeks, 15-20 individual sessions of Deep TMS occur.

Deep TMS has been shown to be safe in recent studies and is only associated with mild side effects, such as passing headaches and scalp discomfort. Easily confused with Electroconvulsive Therapy or “shock therapy,” dTMS is actually much safer since there is no association with seizures.

What does dTMS Treat?

Deep Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation was cleared by the FDA to treat depression that has resisted other forms of therapy, including antidepressant medication. However, DTMS is also being explored as a treatment option for a multitude of brain-related conditions, including smoking cessation, obsessive compulsive disorder and mild cognitive impairment (MCI).

What are the Differences Between TMS and dTMS?

As detailed by Texas TMS Center, dTMS targets more interior regions of the brain than those affected by TMS. With this new form of brain stimulation therapy, areas of the brain that were previously inaccessible through noninvasive means can now be reached. Deep Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation treatment uses a specially designed electromagnetic coil that is designed to reach the innermost depths of the brain. This coil, the H coil, is patented by Brainsway. There are a number of different H-Coils in use today. The multitude of designs available allow dTMS to function as a treatment for various brain disorders.

Despite being a relatively new medical procedure, Deep Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation has been shown to be an auspicious form of treatment for brain disorders. Like Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation, Deep TMS is a safe and effective option for treating drug-resistant depression. This is a miraculous development for many suffering from depression without relief, offering a new option for treatment.

For more information about dTMS services for depression treatment in Los Angeles, contact Westside Neurotherapeutics by phone at 310.946.0008 or email us at info@westsideneurotherapeutics.com.

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