‘Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation’ (TMS) For Depression (& Chronic Pain): Brainsway vs. Neurostar.
Though they are both classed as TMS they differ in terms of the magnetic stimulation techniques used.
The Brainsway supposedly represents the newer technology. It uses a bigger, more encapsulating H-coil that does cover a larger portion of the brain — and supposedly can go deeper. Neurostar, a pioneer in TMS, uses a 8-coil that does not envelop the brain as much as the H-coil. It is claimed that the H-coil can stimulate brain ’tissue’ 2.4 – 5.7 times deeper than the 8-coil. However, it should also be noted that it is easier to have Sham H-coils (i.e., placebo coils) than it is with 8-coils!
A Brainsway session is 15 minutes shorter per session than a Neurostar session; 22 minutes vs. 37 minutes.
Neurostar uses rTMS (as described in my book above).
Brainstar calls its process Deep TMS (dTMS). I cannot get anybody to tell me, as yet, whether dTMS uses a faster or slower ‘repetition’ rate (i.e., the rate of pulsing) than rTMS.
The Brainstar is still relatively new.
From what I can find there are two other companies that offer TMS products: Magstim and Magvita. I, however, have not found any ‘doctors’ offering TMS using these devices anywhere around New England. I will do more research.
Though only approved for treating Depression per se, TMS, whether rTMS or dTMS, is a viable treatment option for ‘Central Pain Syndrome‘ (CPS) and other instances of Chronic Pain, including Fibromyalgia, since any degree of depression exaggerates your perception of pain.
TMS was FDA approved for treating treatment-resistant depression as as of 2008.