TMS for depression: Device stimulates parts of brain associated with mood

Main Line Health Behavioral Health provides an effective, non-invasive treatment modality for depression. Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) is an FDA-approved device proven effective for treatment of patients with severe depression whose condition has not improved from standard drug therapy. Located at Bryn Mawr Hospital, TMS works by using magnetic pulses precisely targeted to areas of the brain associated with mood—areas that are underactive in depressed people.

What to expect from TMS therapy

You’ll be awake throughout the TMS treatment, which takes less than 45 minutes. During the procedure, you will feel the curved device that houses the magnetic coil, resting against your head. You’ll also hear a clicking sound.

This is an outpatient treatment done five days a week for four to six weeks. You can resume daily activities immediately after each treatment. This includes being able to drive yourself to and from the appointment.

Although free of the side effects commonly associated with medication, TMS may cause some minor side effects, usually related to mild pain at the site of the treatment.

As with any therapy, every person is different and TMS is not for everyone. If it is determined you are a candidate for TMS, your doctor can further discuss the risks and benefits with you.

To schedule an appointment with a specialist at Main Line Health, call 1.888.227.3898 or use our secure online appointment request form.