How does TMS work to help manage symptoms other than Depression like Anxiety, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, and Chronic Pain?
How does TMS work to help manage symptoms other than Depression-like Anxiety, Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, and Chronic Pain?
Briefly, by using Transcranial magnetic stimulation to target different areas of the brain, we can slowly change brain chemistry and restabilize areas that used to be functional before. In the case of anxiety, we use TMS to send magnetic pulses to “calm” the areas of your brain that control our responses to threats or fears. We have had patient’s who report that within five sessions their anxiety is no longer debilitating which certainly improves their quality of life.
In the case of pain syndromes, Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) of the prefrontal cortex can cause changes in acute pain perception which is believed to act via inhibitory pathways that arise from the same area TMS is targeted to treat depression (dorsolateral prefrontal cortex).
TMS has helped patient’s chronic pain, especially when depression may be exacerbating the perceptions of pain symptoms. Individuals with chronic pain are more likely to have depression, and individuals with chronic depression are more likely to have pain. To date, only 30-40% of patients receive a satisfactory response to conventional treatments such as medication. There is significant evidence supporting the use of rTMS for its analgesic effects in various pain syndromes such as Fibromyalgia.
Please feel free to reach out to our office if you have any questions about how non-invasive TMS treatments might help with your pain. We will be glad to help!