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- 08 October 2020

Deep TMS in Italy: an innovative and effective treatment

An innovative technique showing promising results in the treatment of various disorders.

Learn more about Deep TMS provided by the Istituto di Neuroscienze!

What is Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS)?

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) is a non-invasive, non-pharmacologic neuromodulation technique that uses the magnetic field to stimulate or inhibit specific areas of the brain. Starting with an electrical stimulus passing through the machine's coil, a magnetic pulse is generated that can painlessly penetrate the treated person's skull and reach the cerebral cortex, inducing a stimulatory current capable of modulating the activity of neuron cells.

Depending on the chosen parameters for stimulation, the effect on the brain can be of two types:

  1. Activation - induction/increase in the electrical activity of an otherwise inactive or hypoactive area;

  2. Inhibition - reduction of the ongoing electrical activity in a given hyperactive area.

Several laboratory studies suggest that the modulation action of neuronal activity achieved by TMS is accomplished through enhancement and potentiation of Brain Derived Neurotrofic Factor (BDNF; an important factor involved in neuronal cell plasticity) activity through an action on its TrkB receptors, thus suggesting that the benefits obtained through this neuromodulation technique can be attributed to an improvement in brain plasticity.

Types of TMS

There are different types of TMS, which can be applied in a customized manner to effectively achieve the specific therapeutic goal set for each individual patient:

  • Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (rTMS);

  • Theta Burst Stimulation (TBS);

  • Theta-Burst Multi Session Treatment (SNT);

  • Deep Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (Deep TMS);

At Dr. Pallanti's Istituto di Neuroscienze we operate on the full range of TMS for the treatment of psychiatric disorders. In addition, we are the only facility in Italy that makes use of Neuronavigation to localize the target of stimulation, thus succeeding in greatly increasing the precision of treatment.

Learn more about the features of different types of TMS

Deep TMS ― Deep Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation

What is it and how does it work?

Deep Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (Deep TMS) represents an innovative technique in the field of neuroscience. Unlike other neuromodulation methods, it demonstrates the ability to non-invasively reach deep brain regions located beneath the cortical surface, up to 6cm in depth.

Using a special helmet coil, Deep TMS is able to reach deep brain areas that are proven to underlie several psychiatric disorders, which are otherwise unreachable through other, more superficial types of stimulation.

Efficacy and Safety of Deep TMS

The Deep TMS used by Dr. Stefano Pallanti's Istituto di Neuroscienze is the only device approved by the FDA for the treatment of Depression, Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder (OCD), and Nicotine Dependence and is currently undergoing approval for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder (PTSD).

Research has shown that this type of stimulation can be highly effective, with response rates exceeding 80%. Furthermore, Deep TMS is generally a highly safe procedure with no notable side effects.

Currently, extensive clinical studies are being conducted in various disciplines and for different conditions, contributing to the growing body of clinical evidence regarding the effectiveness of Neuromodulation Therapies.

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