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Frequently Asked Questions

  • What is TMS?
    Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is a safe, effective, and non-invasive form of brain stimulation. Approved by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA), TMS devices operate outside of the body and use magnetic fields to stimulate nerve cells in specific areas of the brain to improve symptoms of major depressive disorder (MDD), obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), anxiety, nicotine dependency, and cognitive impairments amongst others.
  • In what conditions is TMS used?
    FDA (USA) and CE (Europe) have approved TMS for many neurological and psychiatric conditions such as major depressive disorder (MDD), obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), anxiety, nicotine dependency, cognitive impairments, auditory hallucinations, negative symptoms in schizophrenia, suicidal ideations, and parkinson’s disease amongst others.
  • How long has TMS been researched in studies before getting FDA approval?
    TMS has been researched since 1985, before it was approved by the US FDA in 2008. The first studies of ‘daily left prefrontal high frequency TMS for depression’ date back to the mid-1990’s at the National Institute of Health (NIH) in Washington, DC. The technology was investigated with millions of patients in the US and other countries. A large body of evidence is available to show that TMS is beneficial in relieving depressive symptoms in treatment resistant patients who failed more than one antidepressant drug therapy in their current depressive episode. Along similar lines, FDA approved TMS therapy for OCD and nicotine dependance. Our devices at Asha Neuromodulation Clinic are the best in class and approved by the US FDA.
  • How do I know if I am eligible for TMS?
    The best way to determine whether you’re eligible for transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is to consult your doctor at Asha Neuromodulation Clinic. They will perform a detailed assessment to determine your eligibility for TMS and discuss with you regarding the procedure and answer any questions that you may have.
  • In whom is TMS contraindicated or avoided?
    There are a few patients in whom TMS therapy is contraindicated or avoided (e.g., anyone with ferromagnetic materials, implant devices etc. in and around the head and neck are contraindicated for TMS therapy). To obtain this information, we do a detailed screening procedure of every patient before suggesting TMS therapy. We request every patient to pay heed to your doctor’s advice at Asha Neuromodulation Clinic regarding the same.
  • How many sessions of TMS are required?
    It is primarily decided by your treating doctor, but usually for a therapeutic response, you need at least 10-20 sessions in total. One or two sessions are administered per day, based on the recommendation of your doctor.
  • How much time does a session of TMS take?
    Each session lasts between 20-30 minutes, depending upon the protocol used.
  • Does TMS require any preparation prior to the session?
    We will screen you prior to administering TMS to ensure your compatibility with the therapy. Preparations like fasting prior to a session, anaesthesia etc. are absolutely not required.
  • Does TMS have any side effects?
    TMS does not have serious side effects. Some patients experience mild side effects including scalp muscle twitching or mild headache at the area of treatment. One very uncommon adverse event with TMS is a seizure episode (< 0.1%). In our clinical experience with TMS in the past decade at ANC, we never saw a patient discontinue the treatment in view of side effects or witness a TMS-induced seizure.
  • Will I require any recovery time after a TMS session?
    No. Since no anaesthesia or other invasive procedure is involved, you will typically not require any specific recovery time after an TMS. You will be able to continue with your day as soon as the treatment is over. However, if you experience any side effects, we may recommend a brief period of observation at the clinic to ensure your safety.
  • Can I continue my medications along with TMS?
    Yes, it is safe and recommended to continue your medications along with the TMS treatment. It is best to consult your doctor about the use and dosage of medications during and after the TMS sessions.
  • Which technology do you use for TMS?
    We have two types of TMS technologies at our clinic – BrainsWay Deep TMS system and the MagVenture rTMS system. The BrainsWay Deep rTMS system is one of the latest, cutting-edge technologies in the field and has been FDA cleared for major depressive disorder (MDD), depression with anxious distress, obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD) and nicotine dependence. Its advanced technology stimulates deeper areas of the brain than those stimulated by a traditional rTMS system. We are one of the only centres in India and one of the few in the world to use this technology in the field of psychiatry.
  • What is t DCS?
    Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is a non-invasive, painless brain stimulation treatment that uses direct electrical currents to stimulate specific parts of the brain. A constant, low intensity current is passed between two electrodes placed over the head. The current that enters the brain tissues helps modulate neuronal activity. There are two types of stimulation associated with tDCS: anodal and cathodal stimulation. Anodal stimulation acts to excite neuronal activity while cathodal stimulation inhibits or reduces neuronal activity. tDCS is used to treat depression, anxiety, hallucinations, cognitive dysfunctions amongst others.
  • What are the side-effects caused due to tDCS treatment?
    Transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) is usually well tolerated by most patients of different age groups. Only a handful of patients feel discomfort in the form of slight burning or itching sensation over the scalp. The saline or gel used during the procedure will counteract these effects in the majority of patients. This is self-limited and disappears after the treatment is over.
  • What do you mean by Biofeedback?
    Biofeedback is fundamentally a relaxation technique that employs visual or auditory feedback to patients in anxiety, or other related disorders. In a biofeedback session, the patient learns to adapt to the stressful situation and learns to control the visceral behaviour. Heart rate, muscle tension, respiration, skin conductance, temperature are few of the physiological variables the patient learns to control after the biofeedback. Towards the end of the session, the patients will learn how to relax their minds and bodies and cope better with the symptoms of stress. Apart from anxiety, biofeedback is used for tension headaches, neurofeedback, various breathing exercises amongst others.
  • What difference will neuromodulation make to the diagnosis and management of a psychiatric illness?
    Neuromodulation can improve the clinical outcome in many psychiatric conditions. Single pulse TMS may help diagnose a few conditions also. Neuromodulation provides an objective platform in the management of a psychiatric illness as well as minimise, to a significant level, the side effects of the conventional ECT treatment used in treatment resistant cases. Neuromodulation provides a space for counselling and other behavioural interventions during the treatment. This has the potential to dramatically improve patients’ condition in disorders like OCD and depression.
  • Why should one choose Asha Neuromodulation Clinic?
    Doctors and staff at Asha Neuromodulation Clinic have in-depth knowledge in the field of neuromodulation clinical practice and research. We use advanced and safe technologies which are US FDA and CE approved. With more than a decade of experience in this field and overwhelming positive patient feedback, we are confident about the benefits of neuromodulation. We are committed to making the latest advances in our field accessible to all our patients in a safe and
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