For the most part, just about any type of patient is capable of getting TMS therapy. There are a few exceptions, however. The following types of individuals may not qualify for TMS therapy:
- Patients who have undergone brain surgery and still have magnetic metals in the brain
- Patients who have never responded to other depression treatments
- Very elderly patients
- Patients who have seizures
The reason leftover magnetic metals in the brain can prevent TMS therapy candidacy is that the process is based on magnetic stimulation. The treatment operates under the assumption that there are no other magnetic presences in the brain, which is true unless a patient has undergone certain types of surgical procedures. During TMS therapy, the metals would heat up and result in more harm than heal.
Having metals in the body may not necessarily disqualify a patient. Our office has experience working with a patient with stainless steel in her body away from the treatment site. Stainless steel contains very mild magnetic properties, but the far proximity makes her a suitable candidate for TMS therapy regardless.