Center for Integrative Psychiatry

A Brief History and Development of Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS)

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) is a non-invasive and safe procedure that has gained popularity in the mental health field over the last few decades. It treats various neurological and psychiatric disorders, including depression, anxiety, and schizophrenia. In this blog post, we will explore the history and development of TMS, its benefits, and its use in modern medicine. 


History and Development of TMS:

The first use of TMS dates back to the early 1980s when Anthony Barker and his colleagues in England developed a device that used magnetic stimulation to stimulate the brain’s motor cortex. Their device used a coil of wire placed on the scalp to produce a magnetic field that could stimulate the neurons in the brain without the need for surgery. This groundbreaking discovery paved the way for the development of TMS as we know it today.

In the late 1980s, researchers began to explore the potential of TMS in treating various neurological and psychiatric disorders. The first TMS machine was approved for use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in 2008 for the treatment of major depressive disorder. Since then, TMS has been used to treat various other disorders, including obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and Parkinson’s disease.


Benefits of TMS:

TMS is a non-invasive and safe procedure that has minimal side effects. It works by using magnetic fields to stimulate specific regions of the brain that are responsible for the regulation of mood, cognition, and behavior. TMS has been shown to be effective in treating various mental health disorders, and it has been used as an alternative treatment for patients who have not responded well to traditional treatments, such as medication and therapy.


TMS has many benefits over traditional treatments, including:
  1. Non-invasive: TMS does not require surgery or implants, making it a less invasive treatment option.
  2. No sedation: TMS does not require sedation, and patients can return to their normal activities immediately after the procedure.
  3. Minimal side effects: TMS has little to no side effects, which may include headache or discomfort at the stimulation site.
  4. Targeted treatment: TMS can be targeted to specific areas of the brain, allowing for more precise treatment.


Use of TMS in Modern Medicine:

TMS has become an increasingly popular treatment option in modern medicine. Its use has expanded beyond the treatment of depression to include a variety of other mental health disorders. TMS is also being used in research to better understand brain function and to develop new treatments for neurological disorders.

TMS has come a long way since its inception in the 1980s. Its development has led to a safe and effective treatment option for various neurological and psychiatric disorders. At the Center for Integrative Psychiatry, we believe in providing our patients with the latest treatment options, and TMS is just one of the many options we offer. If you or a loved one is struggling with a mental health disorder, don’t hesitate to contact us to schedule a consultation. 

Stay tuned for our next blog, where we explore the different types of TMS and their differences.



  1. National Institute of Mental Health. (2021). Brain Stimulation Therapies. Retrieved from 
  2. O’Reardon, J.P., Solvason, H.B., Janicak, P.G., et al. (2007). Efficacy and safety of transcranial magnetic stimulation in the acute treatment of major depression: a multisite randomized controlled trial. Biological Psychiatry, 62(11), 1208-1216. doi: 10.1016/j.biopsych.2007.01.018
  3. 3. Texas Center for Integrative Psychiatry. (2023). Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS). 
  4. Wassermann, E.M. (1998). Risk and safety of repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation: report and suggested guidelines from the International Workshop on the Safety of Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation, June 5-7, 1996. Electroencephalography and Clinical Neurophysiology, 108(1), 1-16. doi: 10.1016/s0168-5597(97)00096-8


At the Center for Integrative Psychiatry, we offer TMS as a treatment option for patients who have not responded well to traditional treatments. Our team of experienced mental health professionals is dedicated to providing our patients with the highest quality of care. If you or a loved one is struggling with a mental health disorder, contact us today to schedule a consultation.

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