TMS is a non-invasive method of brain stimulation that relies on electromagnetic induction using an insulated coil placed over the scalp, focused on an area of the brain thought to play a role in mood regulation. The coil generates brief magnetic pulses, which pass easily and painlessly through the skull and into the brain. The pulses generated are of the same type and strength as those generated by magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) machines. When these pulses are administered in rapid succession, it is referred to as “repetitive TMS “ or “rTMS”, which can produce longer lasting changes in brain activity.
rTMS has been shown to be a safe and well-tolerated procedure that can be an effective treatment for patients with depression who have not benefitted from antidepressant medications or cannot tolerate antidepressant medications due to side-effects. TMS was FDA-cleared in 2008 and now is widely available at clinics and hospitals across the country.
We are pleased to announce that the Johns Hopkins Brain Stimulation Program is now offering Deep Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (dTMS) utilizing the H-coil, which is a novel rTMS tool that enables direct stimulation of deeper and larger brain volumes. This coil is designed to affect extensive neuronal pathways, including deeper cortical regions and fibers targeting subcortical regions, without a significant increase in the electric field induced in superficial cortical layers (Levkovitz et al., 2015).
In addition to dTMS, the Brain Stimulation program continues to offer conventional TMS using the figure-of-8 coil.
rTMS therapy is not appropriate for all patients. Before scheduling you for treatment, you must first be evaluated by one of our TMS psychiatrists to determine if rTMS would be safe and appropriate for you.
If you reside locally and are interested in being evaluated for outpatient rTMS treatment, contact Michael Tibbs.