Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is a non-invasive treatment that uses magnetic fields to stimulate specific areas of the brain. It has emerged as an effective option for treating a variety of mental health conditions, particularly depression. At TMS Erina, patients can access this innovative treatment in a warm, relaxed, and caring environment. The dedicated team of psychiatrists and technicians guide patients through every step of the process, ensuring a personalised approach tailored to their unique needs.

1. Effective for Treatment-Resistant Depression

One of the primary benefits of TMS is its ability to treat depression, even in cases where other therapies have failed. TMS targets the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex, an area of the brain that is often underactive in individuals with depression. By stimulating this region, TMS can help alleviate depressive symptoms and improve mood.

Studies have shown that TMS can be an effective treatment for individuals with treatment-resistant depression, with up to 60% of patients experiencing improvement in their symptoms. This makes TMS a valuable option for those who have not found relief from traditional treatments like medication and psychotherapy.


2. Reduced Side Effects Compared to Medication

Another key benefit of TMS is that it has a lower risk of side effects compared to antidepressant medications. Common side effects of antidepressants can include nausea, weight gain, sexual dysfunction, and drowsiness.

In contrast, the side effects associated with TMS are generally mild and short-lived. Patients may experience some discomfort or mild headaches during the treatment, but these typically subside shortly after the session. TMS does not require any anaesthesia or sedation, and it does not interfere with a person’s ability to drive or perform daily activities.


3. Potential Applications Beyond Depression

While TMS is primarily used to treat depression, research has also suggested that it may be beneficial for other mental health conditions, such as obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), anxiety disorders, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and schizophrenia.

At TMS Erina, the clinic is constantly monitoring TMS protocols both in Australia and internationally to offer the most up-to-date treatments available. Currently, the clinic offers several treatment protocols, including for treatment-resistant major depressive illness/bipolar depression, anxiety disorders, OCD, and PTSD.


4. Flexibility and Convenience

TMS is an outpatient procedure, meaning that patients can receive treatment and then return to their daily activities without the need for hospitalisation or extended recovery time. This makes TMS a more convenient option compared to some other therapies, such as electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), which requires anaesthesia and a hospital stay.

Treatment sessions are 20mins in duration, offered Monday to Friday between 9am and 5pm. We try to accommodate the individual needs of our patients with our scheduling times.


5. Accessibility through Medicare Bulk-Billing

One of the standout benefits at TMS Erina is our commitment to making this innovative treatment financially accessible for all eligible patients by offering bulk billing. After recognising the transformative impact of TMS for treatment-resistant depression, Medicare added TMS to the benefit schedule in 2021.

Patients 18 years and over, who have trialled 2 different classes of antidepressant medication but failed to see significant improvement in their symptoms or the medications were not able to be tolerated due to side effects will be eligible for bulk billing. Medicare cover 35 treatment sessions in the initial course and 15 maintenance treatments which are available 4 months after completion of the initial course.

Additionally, we can arrange treatment approvals for individuals covered by Workers’ Compensation, Compulsory Third Party (CTP) insurance, or the Department of Veterans’ Affairs (DVA). By prioritising accessibility and affordability, TMS Erina is ensuring that individuals in the Central Coast region have the opportunity to explore this highly effective treatment option for their mental health needs.

TMS offers a range of benefits for individuals seeking treatment for mental health conditions, particularly depression. Its effectiveness, reduced side effects, potential applications beyond depression, and flexibility make it a valuable addition to the arsenal of mental health treatments. As research continues to explore the full potential of TMS, it is likely that its use will continue to expand in the years to come, with providers like TMS Erina leading the way in delivering this innovative treatment to those in need.

Ready to learn more about how TMS can help you? Please speak to your GP about seeking a referral to TMS Erina for an assessment with a one of their Psychiatrists.