Explore the 7 Pros of TMS Therapy

Manuel Astruc, M.D. & Associates, has one goal — to help people find relief.

Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) offers new hope in the form of a new, noninvasive treatment alternative with minimal side effects. The bottom line is we are here to help you feel your best.

You can get better, even if other treatments haven’t helped in the past. TMS has been FDA-approved for treatment-resistant depression for more than 10 years. Still, few doctors are aware of it and just how effective it is.

The benefits of TMS include:

None of the Side Effects Associated with Traditional Treatments

Side effects like sexual problems, weight gain, and sleepiness are among the most common complaints associated with medications for depression. TMS has no such issues. Treatment consists of gentle magnetic pulses administered externally in short bursts. It’s safe, effective, and won’t leave you feeling groggy or foggy.

TMS Therapy Is Effective

Patients with treatment-resistant depression have experienced 50% to 70% response rates. Additionally, a recent study published in the American Journal of Psychiatry found that many patients experience significant relief in five days, with 80% becoming symptom-free in one month.

Covered by Insurance

Many policies cover TMS, provided your depression has failed to respond to two to four antidepressants and a course of psychotherapy. Check your policy terms or speak with your insurance company — each has its own unique requirements.

TMS Therapy on Your Schedule

It’s easy to fit a treatment session into your daily schedule. You can walk in and out within 30 to 40 minutes and go about your day. You can drive, work, and perform all your normal activities.

Noninvasive Treatment for Depression

TMS, which is FDA-approved, doesn’t require sedation. It’s administered in a relaxing atmosphere at the office, with patients wearing a helmet-like device that fits comfortably on the head.

No Addictive Properties

Some medications can create additional issues. In contrast, the magnetic pulses of TMS treatment are effective but not habit forming.

No Memory Issues

Unlike electroconvulsive therapy (ECT), or “shock therapy,” as it’s often called, TMS has no negative effects on memory or cognition.

Discover the Potential Cons of TMS Therapy

Unlike many traditional treatments, TMS therapy has relatively few drawbacks. 

Possible TMS disadvantages include:

Time Commitment

Each treatment session lasts 30 to 40 minutes, on average. Patients must commit to daily treatments for three to nine weeks. 

Low Risk of Seizures

There is a very low risk of a seizure. If it does occur, it will happen while you are hooked up to the TMS machine and under medical supervision.

Insurance Criteria

Your insurance carrier may or may not provide coverage for TMS treatment, depending on the criteria established in your policy. For example, many people with treatment-resistant depression must try two or three medications before their insurance will cover TMS.

Mild Scalp Discomfort

Although the few side effects are all short-lived and mild, one of the most common complaints is mild scalp discomfort. It may feel like tingling, tapping, or tightening of the muscles in the area, and it goes away quickly once the session ends. Patients who experience this sensation report that it lessens over time.


Some insurance companies may not pay anything at all to help offset the cost of TMS treatment. Costs vary, depending on the number of treatments needed and other individualized factors. Insurance companies often require the patient to make a copayment for each treatment. However, many people consider this treatment cost-effective as compared to other modalities that don’t work well or provide relief.

Lack of Education

TMS has been FDA-approved for the care of treatment-resistant depression, which is defined as having failed at least one antidepressant over 10 years.

However, many people, including primary care physicians and therapists, don’t even know that it exists.

Pros and Cons at a Glance


No medication


Effective — even people who have failed to gain relief from meds achieve a 60% to 70% response rate

Tested with more than 10 years of experience

Minimal side effects


Time commitment

Some discomfort

Insurance requirements

Costs - up front or copayment

  • $10 – $350
  • $20 – $700
  • $30 – $1,050


Common Misconceptions About TMS

You Can Still Take Your Meds

TMS won’t interfere with most medications. You can also opt for TMS in combination with antidepressants — it may even increase their effectiveness. During your consultation and evaluation, Dr. Astruc will evaluate any prescription and over-the-counter drugs you take.

TMS Is Not Only for Depression

Currently, TMS is FDA-approved for treatment-resistant depression. However, growing evidence shows that it may be effective in relieving other conditions too. Off-label use of TMS is typically not covered by insurance.

TMS Is Not New

Although it’s new to many people, TMS has been around for decades. It was invented in 1985 and has been FDA-approved for major depression since 2008.

Insurance Regulations Have Changed

At one time, insurance carriers didn’t cover TMS therapy. Thanks to evolving regulations, many carriers now cover it as medically necessary for qualifying patients, although there may be policy limitations.

Learn More About TMS Treatments Available in Saratoga Springs, NY

Manuel Astruc, M.D., is the only TMS provider in Saratoga County. We have more than 20 years of experience and a commitment to help you reclaim your life and feel better.

If medication hasn’t helped alleviate your symptoms of depression, TMS may be the answer. Start your journey to happiness with TMS Therapy in Saratoga Springs, NY.