Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) is a non-invasive form of brain stimulation that can be used to treat depression and other psychiatric disorders. In treating depression, TMS may be used when patients have not responded to antidepressant medications, have unacceptable side effects to medications or would prefer to try another treatment option. This treatment can be provided either on inpatient or outpatient basis.

TMS has been extensively studied for over 20 years with a large number of clinical trials confirming that it is an effective treatment. 

TMS is an approved treatment for depression in multiple countries, including Australia, the United States, Canada, Israel, and the United Kingdom.

How does TMS Treatment work?

TMS uses magnetic fields generated from an electrical coil which is placed over the scalp to activate specific areas of the brain. Over repeated sessions the changes in brain activity are thought to correct abnormal brain functioning associated with depression. 

Treatment sessions for TMS occur in the TMS suite at The Melbourne Clinic. Treatment sessions for TMS last between 30 and 40 minutes. During this time you will be monitored by a nurse in the TMS suite. You will be sitting in a comfortable chair completely awake and alert. For the initial course of TMS patients usually have 20 sessions of TMS over four weeks. TMS treatment is generally very well tolerated and appears to be free of major side-effects.

Who is suitable for TMS therapy?

Patients who are suitable for TMS will typically have continued symptoms of depression despite having tried two or more antidepressant medications.
There are a few factors that may make a patient not suitable for TMS, having a history of epilepsy or seizures, being pregnant, or under 18 years of age.

How do I access the program?

If you are interested in having TMS, your Psychiatrist can discuss with you whether this is a suitable treatment option. From there, a referral can be made to the TMS Team at The Melbourne Clinic so you can be formally assessed.

If you do not have a psychiatrist, a referral from your GP can be addressed to ‘Dear Doctor’ or to one of our accredited psychiatrists and faxed to Intake on 03 9420 9351.

Please click HERE for our Specialist Directory and referral process. 

For further information of TMS Therapy, please contact the TMS Coordinator, Sue Tran:
Phone: 03 9487 4628
Fax: 03 9487 4655

How much does it cost?

Your psychiatrist can advise you of the best options to access Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS). 

Prior to commencing repeated Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (rTMS) at The Melbourne Clinic, all referrals undergo a review of funding options that may be available to them including private health funds, WorkCover Authority, DVA and TAC. Self-funding is also an option.

Patients and their families will be advised where possible of any out of pocket expenses.

Please call us on 03 9487 4628 to discuss any questions you may have in relation to cost.


TMS information brochure

TMS Patient Information booklet


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