Medication management is not part of TMS therapy. TMS Solutions' role is to administer TMS Therapy only. Any changes in a patient’s medication management is at the discretion of the referring physician. TMS Solutions’ Chief Medical Officer is open to collaboration with referring physicians to provide the best care for each patient.
** Please let us know if your medication changes at any time during treatment **
Mapping is the process used to find the treatment location on a patient's head. During the mapping session, the patient is given a white cotton cap to wear. Utilizing the TMS device, the physician tests for a nerve response and takes measurements, which are written on the cap. The patient wears the cap at every appointment to make it easy for the Technician to place the TMS device in the same treatment location. The paragraphs below give a more detailed description of the mapping process.
There is a portion of the brain called the homunculus that runs across the head from ear to ear. It is referred to as the "motor strip", and it controls your movement on the opposite sides of your body. Scientists have found that a magnetic pulse administered to this region on the left side of the head causes a response in the right thumb and fingers in the form of a twitch—like a reflex when the doctor taps your knee. The mapping session entails finding this area of your brain's motor strip by administering single magnetic pulses of increased strength until there is a twitch in the thumb or fingers. We refer to this as your motor threshold.
Once your motor threshold is determined, the doctor moves the magnetic coil forward of the motor strip in five centimeter increments, which we refer to as “the hunt”. At each stop, a pulse is emitted to stimulate the fingers on the right hand. The strength of the finger twitch, or lack thereof, determines whether or not the location is correct. Once the strongest response is observed, the location is recorded so treatment can be administered in that exact spot during every treatment session moving forward. As stated before, the patient is alert and interacts with the technician during this mapping session. There is no pain during this process, only the tapping sensation that accompanies the magnetic pulse.
The area of the brain we are hunting for is called the left dorsolateral prefrontal cortex; it is a nexus of nerve cells involved in depression. Think of this area as a trailhead for your limbic system. By stimulating this portion of the brain, the magnetic pulses continue to stimulate neurons along neural pathways, ultimately stimulating deeper brain structures involved with depression.
Images of a patient being mapped.