Transcranial magnetic stimulation in psychiatry and neurology
Health Council of the Netherlands, Gezondheidsraad
Record ID 32011000487
Various institutions have recently begun using a new medical technique. It involves placing a magnetic coil (which generates a magnetic field) on a patient’s skull. The aim is to use this magnetic field to influence processes in the brain. This technique is known as Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation or TMS.
The technique is used to ameliorate certain psychiatric symptoms. Research is also under way to determine whether it could be used to treat various neurological diseases. TMS is also a useful tool in brain research.
Is it a practical addition to the existing arsenal of interventions? This is the topic of this horizon scanning/early warning report. It was drafted by a Health Council standing committee which specialises in the evaluation of innovative medical treatments.
While the application of TMS appears to be relatively inexpensive, nothing is yet known about its actual cost-effectiveness. Efficacy studies should focus, in particular, on the use of TMS to treat patients suffering from depression who are not responding well to medication. This might also usefully be combined with the development of guidelines for medical professionals in the Netherlands. In this context, it would also be useful to study the longer term effects of TMS therapy.
English language abstract:
An English language summary is available
- Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation
Health Council of the Netherlands Gezondheidsraad
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Health Council of the Netherlands(GR)