Transcranial magnetic stimulation

What is transcranial magnetic stimulation?

Transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) is a non-invasive method that assesses inhibitory and excitatory mechanisms in the brain. Inhibitory processes include the cortical silent period, which is measured from the motor evoked potential onset to the return of electromyography. Long and short-interval cortical inhibition involve the pairing of a suprathreshold conditioning stimulus followed by a suprathreshold test stimulus, at either long or short interstimulus intervals. Excitatory processes include the motor evoked potential amplitude, which is measured as the average response to a series of pulses applied at a consistent TMS intensity. The resting motor threshold is defined as the minimal intensity that produces a motor evoked potential in a relaxed muscle, and intracortical facilitation is a paired-pulse paradigm whereby a conditioning stimulus is applied to the motor cortex before the test stimulus.

What is the evidence for TMS?

High quality evidence suggests decreased short-interval cortical inhibition in people with schizophrenia compared to controls. There were no differences in resting motor threshold, intracortical facilitation, cortical silent period, and motor evoked potential amplitude.

March 2019

Last updated at: 2:28 am, 28th March 2019
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