TMS is now available in St. Louis, according to local TV commercials promoting this crippling form of brain stimulation.
Techniques such as “transcranial magnetic stimulation” (TMS) are psychiatry’s latest experiment in treatment of the “mentally ill.”
In TMS, a magnetic coil is placed near the patient’s scalp and a powerful and rapidly changing magnetic field passes through skin and bone and penetrates a few centimeters (up to 2.5 inches) into the outer cortex (outer gray matter) of the brain and induces an electrical current. Repetitive TMS (rTMS) can cause seizures or epileptic convulsions in healthy subjects, depending upon the intensity, frequency, duration and interval of the magnetic stimuli.
With ECT and psychosurgery under intense critical public scrutiny, psychiatry is now feverishly searching for a new “breakthrough miracle” – and TMS is one of the new catch phrases.
The TMS St. Louis web site (http://www.tms-stlouis.com/) says “Deep TMS Therapy is an FDA-cleared depression treatment for patients with depression who have not benefited from antidepressant medications.” Well, that makes every patient in mental health care eligible for TMS, since patently none of them have benefited from the drugs.
Why do some people say it “works”?
No one denies that people can have difficult problems in their lives, that at times they can be mentally unstable. Unfortunately, not only do psychiatrists not understand the etiology (cause) of any mental disorder, they cannot cure them. In effect, psychiatrists are still saying that mental problems are incurable and that the afflicted are condemned to lifelong suffering.
Psychiatric treatments such as TMS, however, are unworkable and dangerous, and while they may temporarily mask some symptoms they do not treat, correct or cure any physical disease or condition.
TMS may temporarily relieve the pressure that an underlying physical problem could be causing but it does not treat, correct or cure any physical disease or condition. This relief may have the person thinking he is better but that relief is not evidence that a psychiatric disorder exists. Ask an illicit drug user whether he feels better when snorting cocaine or smoking dope and he’ll believe that he is, even while the drugs are actually damaging him. Some depression treatments can have a “damping down” effect. They suppress the physical feelings associated with “depression” but they are not alleviating the condition or targeting what is causing it.
The brain is your body’s most energy–intensive organ. It represents only three percent of your body weight but uses twenty–five percent of your body’s oxygen, nutrients and circulating glucose. Therefore any significant metabolic disruptions such as TMS can impact brain function.
The brain stimulation breaks the routine rhythmic flows and activities of the nervous system. The nerves and other body systems are forced to do things they normally would not do. The human body, however, is unmatched in its ability to withstand and respond to such disruptions. The various systems fight back, trying to process the disruption, and work diligently to counterbalance its effect on the body.
But the body can only take so much. Quickly or slowly, the systems break down. Human physiology was not designed for this type of brain stimulation. Tissue damage may occur. Nerves may stop functioning normally. Organs and hormonal systems may go awry. This can be temporary, but it can also be long lasting, even permanent. Like a car run on rocket fuel, you may be able to get it to run a thousand miles an hour, but the tires, the engine, the internal parts, were never meant for this. The machine flies apart.
Side effects (adverse reactions) of TMS may include headache, scalp discomfort, facial muscle spasms, lightheadedness, fainting; altered endocrine, immune or neurotransmitter systems; loss of consciousness; seizures; mania; hearing loss; and, if the patient is depressed, the “treatment” may induce or exacerbate suicidal feelings. Adverse reactions are often delayed – i.e. may appear long after the patient has left the doctor’s office.
You may hear that TMS is called “noninvasive”, but it does impact the brain in ways that are not fully understood. One could say it is “noninvasive” in the same way that ECT is noninvasive – i.e. it doesn’t break the skin. Scorch marks not included. Little is known about the long-term side effects. Cognitive impairment has also been observed in some cases. Using different stimulation intensities and/or patterns may also have significant effects on the long-lasting outcomes.
Typical treatment involves a 40-minute session, five days a week, for four to six weeks. The cost can range from $6,000 to $10,000.
Physically intrusive and damaging practices such as TMS violate the doctor’s pledge to uphold the Hippocratic Oath and “Do no harm.”
New high-tech “treatments” for the brain will continue to be used to create the appearance of scientific progress, but in the end, psychiatry will be no closer to identifying any causes or effecting any cures; instead, their betrayal and brutality in the name of mental health continues. Psychiatry has proven only one thing — without the protection of basic human rights, there can only be diminished mental health.
Persons in desperate circumstances must be provided proper and effective medical care. The correct action on a seriously mentally disturbed person is a full, searching clinical examination by a competent medical doctor to discover and treat the true cause of the problem. Mental health facilities should have non-psychiatric medical experts on staff and be required to have a full complement of diagnostic equipment, which could prevent more than 40% of admissions by finding and treating undiagnosed physical conditions.
Click here for more information about the brutal reality of abusive psychiatric practices such as electroshock, TMS, deep brain stimulation, and psychosurgery.