Frequently Asked Questions

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Will I have to stop taking antidepressants?

No.  TMS therapy can be safely administered with and without other antidepressant medications.  


Are there side effects?

The most common side effects associated with TMS are mild headaches and scalp soreness, both of which usually subside after the first week of treatment. The TMS machine intermittently makes clicking noises which may bother patients and because of this, earplugs are provided at the beginning of each treatment.  In extremely rare cases, seizures have been reported.  If a seizure occurs, the TMS machine will be turned off and the seizure will stop.  The risk of seizing is less than 0.05% and seizures have never been reported to take place outside of the treatment room where patients are monitored.  


How long do TMS sessions take?

Typically, the sessions are scheduled for one hour time slots with actual treatment lasting about 36-39 minutes. 


How long will I have to come for treatment?

TMS therapy is a commitment to your mental health and life quality.  Individual treatment plans vary but generally treatment sessions are administered once a day, 5 days a week, over the course of 6 weeks.  We understand that people have busy lives and therefore, we do our best to work out a schedule and time that best suits the needs of our patients.  

Our team of clinicians is dedicated to providing state-of-the art TMS therapy. The research with TMS is evolving quickly.  


What is TMS Therapy?

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) therapy involves the use of short pulsed magnetic fields to stimulate brain cells that control mood.  TMS was FDA approved for the treatment of depression in 2008, and is currently being studied and used in the treatment of Pervasive Developmental Disorders, Migraines, Focal Chronic Pain, Tinnitus, and PTSD.  


Is TMS the same as ECT?

Both therapies use electricity to stimulate the brain but that is where the similarities end. ECT Is administered while the patient is under general anesthesia.  The ECT treatment causes temporary confusion as well as temporary trouble with memory and sometimes permanent memory loss. TMS therapy is performed while the patient is awake and none of the above side effects have been associated with TMS treatment.  


Will I need anesthesia?

No.  TMS is an outpatient procedure administered while the patient is awake. You will be able to drive yourself home and resume normal activity immediately upon leaving treatment.  


Is TMS therapy uncomfortable?

Some patients may experience slight scalp sensitivity surrounding the area of treatment during their initial few visits.  The discomfort ranges from mild to moderate and may cause a headache.  This discomfort is generally only reported in patients during their first week of treatment.