Transcranial magnetic stimulation, or TMS, stimulates nerve cells in the brain to improve symptoms of depression. This noninvasive, non-pharmaceutical procedure is available from board-certified neurologist David Sudderth, MD, in Fort Myers, Florida. When you’re not getting relief from depression using conventional treatments, consider TMS. For more information, call Dr. Sudderth’s office today or request an appointment online.
TMS uses magnetic fields to stimulate nerve cells in the region of your brain that involve your mood or cause depression. This technology delivers repetitive magnetic pulses through an electromagnetic coil placed against your scalp, near your forehead.
The intention is to trigger activity in areas of your brain that have decreased activity, resulting in depression. As a result of TMS treatments, people find their mood improves, and depression eases.
Depression is treatable, but many conventional treatments, such as medication and talk therapy, aren’t always effective. Repetitive TMS may be an alternative when these other interventions have failed.
Dr. Sudderth does a thorough physical and psychiatric exam before your treatment with TMS. Because of the strong magnetic field created during therapy, people who have specific metal devices, such as stents or implanted deep brain stimulators, may not be a candidate for TMS treatment.
TMS is painless. It requires no surgery or sedation. TMS can sometimes cause mild discomfort on the scalp, lightheadedness, or headache. If you experience these symptoms, talk to Dr. Sudderth about taking over-the-counter pain medication before treatment or about reducing the level of stimulation.
During your appointment, you’ll sit in a treatment room in a reclining chair, and the technician gives you earplugs to wear during the procedure. The doctor or tech places an electromagnetic coil against your head. When it’s switched on, you’ll hear a clicking sound that lasts a few seconds and the sensation of tapping on your forehead.
Dr. Sudderth adjusts the magnetic dose of the device until your fingers or hands twitch. This twitching helps determine the right dose of energy for you. As the procedure progresses, Dr. Sudderth may adjust this stimulation according to your personal needs.
The entire procedure lasts about 40 minutes. You don’t need to schedule downtime following TMS procedures. You can go back to work and drive safely.
If you have depression symptoms that don’t respond to conventional therapies, consider TMS as an option. Call the office of David Sudderth, MD.