A major cause of disability in America is depression. Although medications and therapies are sufficient for most people, they don’t work for everyone. For that reason, researchers are working on alternatives, such as transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), to help people achieve relief. However, a concern that often comes up is the TMS therapy cost.
What Is Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation?
For decades, the only alternative to antidepressants and therapy was electroconvulsive therapy (ECT). Also called shock therapy, it’s an effective way to help people whose bodies resist traditional services. However, the side effects on cognition and memory make ECT difficult for many people to tolerate. Instead, the newer TMS therapy could be a better option.
TMS is a noninvasive type of brain stimulation. It involves operating a device on the outside of the body to activate the central nervous system. The device applies a powerful magnetic field to areas of the brain that have an impact on depression.
Since TMS is a generally well-tolerated therapy, it doesn’t require anesthesia. However, some mild to moderate side effects can occur. Headache, lightheadedness, scalp discomfort, and twitching, tingling or spasms in the face are common. These symptoms dissipate after each session and are less likely to occur after a few sessions.
There’s also a risk for rare but severe side effects, including seizures, hearing loss, and mania. Because of that, TMS might not be ideal for people with epilepsy, head injuries or bipolar disorder.
How Much Does TMS Therapy Cost?
Compared to antidepressants and traditional counseling, TMS is an intensive therapy. In some cases, people undergo five sessions per week for four to six weeks. Each session lasts 20 to 50 minutes depending on their needs and the specific device that the clinic uses.
In general, TMS costs $400 to $500 per session, but the price may vary by clinic and clinic location. For 20 to 30 sessions, the total TMS therapy cost could range from $8,000 to $15,000. By comparison, ECT costs about $2,500 per session and may require a hospital stay.
However, these estimates don’t consider health insurance. Numerous insurance companies now include coverage for TMS in their policies. To qualify for the coverage, people have to meet specific medical requirements and other guidelines. For this reason, they should contact their insurers to verify their eligibility and benefits before they get TMS.
Is TMS Effective?
On average, people who undergo TMS feel better for more than a year. Like most other mood disorder therapies, though, depression symptoms can return. As a result, some people return to mental health clinics for subsequent TMS sessions.
Get Help for Depression Today
Do you need help for depression? Visit PACE Mental Health Houston for a range of therapeutic options, including:
- Medication management
- Individual therapy
- Family counseling
- Trauma therapy
- Mood disorder therapy
- Mindfulness meditation
Don’t ignore your symptoms any longer. Get the support that you need to heal from depression. Call 866.971.8423 to ask our staff for more information about the TMS therapy cost.