WHAT IS DEEP TMS?
Deep transcranial magnetic stimulation therapy, also known as deep TMS or dTMS, is a refined form of TMS treatment using magnetic pulses to stimulate brain activity, improving mood and reducing depression. The term “deep TMS” refers to the depth of the magnetic pulses produced, which penetrate into the brain significantly deeper than with traditional TMS technology. Deep TMS is the most effective outpatient treatment for depression and other mental health conditions that have not responded to medication or therapy. Even if you have tried conventional TMS in the past, many people find that dTMS provides depression relief not experienced with other TMS treatments.
DEEP TMS VS REGULAR TMS
As the newer generation of TMS technology, Deep transcranial magnetic stimulation therapy (dTMS) has more benefits and fewer problems than regular TMS machines. Standard TMS uses a figure-8 magnetic coil to produce magnetic pulses. Figure-8 coils produce a shallower magnetic pulses than the dTMS H-coil, which means less stimulation to the area of the brain affected by depression. The figure-8 coil also stimulates a smaller region of the brain during treatment, so that the adjacent parts of the brain connected to the mood control center do not receive any stimulation. It also means that the likelihood of the TMS technician missing the targeted part of the brain entirely is much greater. Due to these limitations, regular TMS sessions must last longer, often taking over 45 minutes each time.
Deep TMS technology eliminates the trial-and-error component of TMS therapy. The specially designed H-coil helmets remove any risk of not properly stimulating the target brain area. The design of the H-coils produce a deeper penetrating magnetic pulse that also stimulates a larger portion of the brain, maximizing the effectiveness of the treatments. As a result, therapy sessions using dTMS are shorter in duration, typically only lasting about 20 minutes. Deep TMS has demonstrated higher success rates in both long-term and short-term depression symptom remission than standard transcranial magnetic stimulation therapy.
In short, dTMS is more effective, and takes less time than standard TMS, with fewer side-effects, and is covered by most insurances for depression treatment. Deep TMS has also shown to be affective in treating other mental health disorders, aside from treatment-resistant depression. In particular, treatment-resistant obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) has been shown to have remission rates as high, or even greater, than depression when dTMS treatment is employed. Other conditions that can be treated with dTMS include anorexia nervosa, post-traumatic stress disorder, borderline personality disorder, and substance abuse.
STARTING DEEP TMS
Starting dTMS therapy is an easy and painless process. The process begins by scheduling a consultation with one of our certified TMS providers here at the Delray Center for Brain Science. Our knowledgeable psychiatric providers will determine if you are an appropriate candidate for TMS or any of our other outpatient depression treatments. Our staff will help walk you through the insurance authorization and scheduling process. Every TMS candidate undergoes an initial brain mapping session with our head psychiatrist, Dr. Raul J. Rodriguez. After the initial brain mapping, we will help you work out a treatment protocol that best fits your schedule.