‘Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation’ (tDCS) For Depression & Chronic Pain Now Available INEXPENSIVELY.
With cranium referring to the ‘skull’, transcranial means through the skull.
So, of the 4 non-invasive cortical techniques now available, Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) & Transcranial Direct Current Stimulation (tDCS) refer to brain stimulation methods, applied through the skull — in the form of magnetic pulses in the case of TMS and very-low electrical currents (applied to the forehead) in the case of tDCS.
Given its use of electrical currents, tDCS is ‘similar’ to ECT — the huge difference being that tDCS uses a fraction of the current applied with ECT — probably 1/400th. ECT can only be administered under general anesthesia and as such is an expensive and time-consuming process. tDCS can now be done at home in 20-minute sessions! Big difference.
TMS is also expensive.
For what it might cost you to get a few sessions of TMS, you can buy your own tDCS unit!
Think about it.
I will tell you more about tDCS in the coming days. OK?
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.
‘Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation’ (TMS) A Promising Cure For Chronic Pain as In ‘Central Pain Syndrome’.
An interesting treatment option for ‘Central Pain Syndrome‘ (CPS).
It is said to be effective for treatment-resistant depression and is FDA approved as such (as of 2008).
At least some of the pain in chronic pain scenarios is due to depression. So it is possible that TMS works on pain by tackling the depression.
Many of you, especially anyone whose life has been impacted or touched by Fibromyalgia, will find this article with its 20-picture essays interesting.
Nothing new or profound in terms of the condition, just a chronicling of the symptoms and their effects on people and their lives.
A lot is happening, rather quickly, at present, in terms of trying to redefine Fibromyalgia and finally get a good handle on it so that better treatment options could be made available. I have covered some of these in my new ‘Central Pain Syndrome: Chronic, Confounding Pain Such As That Of Fibromyalgia‘ book.
So, please do read this article and take note. Talk to your doctor(s).
I have covered some of these in my new ‘Central Pain Syndrome: Chronic, Confounding Pain Such As That Of Fibromyalgia‘ book.
Don’t continue being misinformed about fibromyalgia. It is important that YOU know what fibromyalgia is all about. It is YOUR PAIN and you need to know the real story.
I do reference this article in my ‘Central Pain Syndrome‘ book. I found this article extremely useful and thought provoking.
If you have fibromyalgia, I really do urge you to read it. It will help you. Of that there can be no doubt or debate.
All the best.
If YOUR Fibromyalgia diagnosis is more than a couple of years old the chances are that your diagnosis may need to be RE-EVALUATED.
For a start, doctors in the know, no longer put much stock in the famous 18-tender pressure-spot diagnosis — for so long the BASIS for diagnosing fibromyalgia.
Fibromyalgia used to be thought of as a condition related to rheumatism (or arthritis). The name itself indicates that it has to do with pain in muscles and fibrous tissues. NOT SO, any more.
The latest thinking is that fibromyalgia is a central nervous system related disorder. As such it is very similar to ‘Central Pain Syndrome‘ (CPS).
On May 16, 2015, the ‘American Pain Society’ issued a press release titled ‘Fibromyalgia Has Central Nervous System Origins’. Its opening sentence was: ‘Fibromyalgia is the second most common rheumatic disorder behind osteoarthritis and, though still widely misunderstood, is now considered to be a lifelong central nervous system disorder, which is responsible for amplified pain that shoots through the body in those who suffer from it’.
WOW. WOW. WOW.
To cap it all, the ‘National Fibromyalgia & Chronic Pain Association’ (NfmCPA) has an article with the title: ‘Fibromyalgia: A Perfect Example of Centralized Pain’.
One thing, however, has NOT changed. More than 75% of those said to have fibromyalgia are women.