TMS Appointments: Call 314-286-1700, Option 2 (No referral necessary)

Traditionally, depression treatment options were limited to medications, talk therapy or electroconvulsive therapy.  Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) is a novel brain stimulation treatment for depression offered by Washington University physicians. 

  • This technology uses a briefly pulsed, powerful magnetic field to re-energize deficient brain circuits involved in depression. Via the principle of electromagnetic induction, this magnetic field generates focused electrical currents over a brain region thought to be affected in depression.
  • The target area is called the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex (this area rests underneath the forehead close to the hair-line). Research indicates that this brain region is underactive in depression.
  • TMS is non-invasive; it is administered at the doctor’s office and does not require anesthesia. Most patients find TMS very tolerable.
  • Research data including randomized placebo controlled trials and meta-analyses demonstrate the efficacy of this depression treatment.

Demonstration of how transcranial magnetic stimulation delivers pulses to an area of the brain called the motor cortex and induces movement of the thumb: