How Treatment works

WHAT is TMS

TMS (Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation) is a technique where neuronal activity can be influenced by non-invasively stimulating the cortex through the intact skull bone. The stimulation is caused by short magnetic pulses, with a field strength similar to a magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) machine. Precise and highly focused magnetic pulses induce a current flow in the targeted cortical brain areas by using easy to move handheld butterfly coils.

Advantages of TMS compared to other treatments
  • Targeted modulation of prefrontal networks
  • Non-invasive and well tolerated
  • No systemic side effects and safe*
  • No cognitive side effects
  • Suitable for long-term treatment

*Rossi et al: Safety, ethical considerations, and application guidelines for the use of TMS in clinical practice and research. Clin. Neurophys, Vol. 120, Oct 2009

How TMS can be used for Therapy

Depending on the stimulation protocol, neuronal functionalities can be inhibited or facilitated for a defined period of time. Repetitive TMS, also known as rTMS, may produce longer-lasting changes in electro-cortical functionalities. Overactive or inhibited (e.g. depression) areas of the brain can be focally modulated with TMS by applying rTMS over a certain period of time.

Effectiveness of TMS in Therapy

TMS in general is a safe* alternative therapy for patients who do not benefit from or tolerate other treatment options. TMS is accepted as an evidence-based treatment option by the American Psychiatric Association (APA), the Canadian Network for Mood and Anxiety Treatments (CANMAT), and the World Federation of Societies of Biological Psychiatry (WFSBP).

The efficacy of TMS for MDD was reviewed as meta-analysis of 29 randomized, double-blind and sham-controlled trials with 1,371 patients (including medication-non-responder). The overall response rate was 29.3 %, the remission rate 18,6 %. (Berlim et al, Psy Med, Vol. 44 (2), Jan 2014)

How long does a TMS Treatment take

Apollo TMS Therapy  for treatment of MDD takes 19 to 37 minutes per session and is applied while the patient is awake and alert. The sessions will be repeated 5 times a week over 4-6 weeks in total. Apollo TMS Therapy  is an in-office treatment.
Normal activities are possible after the treatment sessions.

Treatment Schedule of Apollo TMS Therapy System