• Rick Trautner, MD

TMS Therapy: How Effective is it REALLY?


For more than 8 years, BayTMS has delivered TMS treatment to patients suffering with depression - now almost 600 patients - and we find it to be very effective - REALLY!

Our clinical team administers weekly clinical rating scales to measure each patient’s progress during and after treatment. This discipline is essential for us to accurately assess the clinical impact of TMS therapy on symptom reduction and to make any adjustments in order to achieve a greater clinical response. Here are the actual results in our first 500 patients:

  1. Over 80% of our patients have a response to TMS therapy. (see graph below.)

  2. Over 95% of our patients have received minimal or no relief from 4 or more antidepressants.

  3. Many patients seek TMS therapy due to the side-effect burden of antidepressants. We find the most common side effects are:

  • Weight gain

  • Sexual dysfunction (including reduced desire)

  • Fatigue

About this graph:

The results shown in the graph are from data collected from our first 500 patients. A response to treatment includes patients who have had at least a 25 percent improvement in symptoms, up through those who have experienced a total remission of their depression.

Our clinical team is well trained to administer patient (self-rating) and clinician rating scales. These include the PHQ-9 and the MADRS.

About TMS Therapy (typical information)

TMS Therapy, or Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation, is a breakthrough treatment for depression in which an MRI-strength magnet creates an electrical current directly in the areas of the brain affected by depression. It is performed in our office under the guidance of one of our TMS-trained physicians. Results have been excellent: more than ½ have had a significantly positive response and 1/3 of patients have achieved full remission! Fewer than 1/5 patients have failed to respond. Compared to standard medication treatment as demonstrated in the STAR*D study, these responses are truly excellent. It is extremely gratifying for us to see so many people achieve relief from their symptoms and return to their lives fully functional. Side effects are minimal, usually consisting only of some mild discomfort at the treatment site during the treatment session. The typical treatment course consists of 5 treatments per week for 4-6 weeks, for an average of 20-30 total treatments. Each treatment session lasts about 20 minutes. Benefits of TMS Therapy

  • Highly effective - More than 80% of our patients have a significant response.

  • Non-invasive - TMS does not involve any medications, anesthesia or sedation and the patient remains awake and alert throughout the treatment.

  • Non-systemic - It is a local treatment and does not affect other parts of the body.

  • Minimal side effects - TMS does not have any of the side effects commonly seen with medications such as weight gain, sexual dysfunction, tiredness, or nausea.

Who Can TMS Help?

  • Those whose antidepressants are not working to provide FULL relief of symptoms.

  • Those who are on medications causing side effects that limit quality of life, such as:

  • Sexual dysfunction

  • Weight gain

  • Dry mouth

  • Confused thinking

  • Pregnant or nursing females

  • Those who cannot take antidepressant medications due to intolerable side effects or underlying medical problems.

About Bay TMS

We believe in providing excellent, state-of-the-art, individualized mental health care with a focus on attention to detail and your well-being. We pride ourselves in our outstanding commitment to ensuring that you have a meaningful connection with your TMS doctor and technician throughout the duration of your treatment. After your initial evaluation with your TMS doctor, you will meet with him or her every week and we will send updates to your regular doctor and psychotherapist to keep them informed about your treatment progress. In addition, we encourage you to remain actively engaged with your technician throughout each treatment session. Scientific evidence suggests that these interactions may help to alleviate depression by simultaneously activating other important brain systems. Call our offices for more information or to schedule an appointment: 510-809-1599.


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Schedule an Appointment Today:

510-809-1599    Berkeley

510-809-0160    San Rafael

415-567-6704     San Francisco / San Mateo

Bay Psychiatric Associates © 1994

TMS Berkeley: 2020 Milvia Street, 3rd Floor, Berkeley, CA 94704 | (510) 809-1599 | fax (510) 809-0468 | tmsberkeley@baypsychiatric.com

TMS San Rafael: 1330 Lincoln Ave. Suite 303 San Rafael, CA 94901 | (510) 809-0160 | fax (415) 454-8591 | tmssanrafael@baypsychiatric.com

TMS San Francisco: 2000 Van Ness Ave. Suite 405 San Francisco, CA 94109 | (415) 567-6704 | fax (415) 567-6707 | tmssf@baypsychiatric.com

TMS San Mateo: 1941 O'Farrell St. Suite 103 San Mateo, CA 94403 | (650) 393-4788 | fax (415) 567-6707 | tmssanmateo@baypsychiatric.com

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