Although rTMS is considered relatively safe with mild to moderate side effects that are temporary, it is only used when other treatments for depression aren’t showing effect. There are some people who shouldn’t get rTMS such as those with facial tattoos with magnet-sensitize ink, bullet fragments or shrapnel near the head, metal implants in the eyes or ears, implanted cardioverter defibrillators (ICD), stents in the brain or neck, aneurysm clips or coils, etc. Moreover, it is important to get physical and psychiatric evaluations done to ensure it is safe for you.
Your doctor will place a special electromagnetic coil over a brain area on your head that regulates mood as you sit or recline. This coil will generate magnetic pulses, which will produce electrical current that will stimulate your brain in a way that helps reduce depressive symptoms.
Generally, an rTMS session can last for 30 to 60 minutes, and can be repeated multiple times a week. It can last for 4 to 6 weeks, but depending on the individual’s condition, sessions may be given for shorter or longer duration.
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