Transcranial magnetic stimulation: a possible treatment for TBI

J Head Trauma Rehabil. Sep-Oct 2006;21(5):437-51. doi: 10.1097/00001199-200609000-00063.


The purpose of this article is to outline the principles of transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS), to summarize the existing use of TMS as a prognostic indicator and as a therapeutic device in clinical populations, and to highlight the potential of repetitive TMS (rTMS) as an intervention for traumatic brain injury. TMS is a painless method to stimulate the human brain. Repeated applications of TMS can influence brain plasticity and cortical reorganization through stimulation-induced alterations in neuronal excitability. Existing evidence has demonstrated positive outcomes in people with motor disorders and psychiatric conditions who have received rTMS as a therapeutic intervention. These findings suggest that rTMS may be a promising treatment for people with traumatic brain injury.

Publication types

  • Research Support, N.I.H., Extramural
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Review

MeSH terms

  • Brain / physiopathology
  • Brain Injuries / diagnosis
  • Brain Injuries / physiopathology
  • Brain Injuries / rehabilitation*
  • Cerebral Cortex / physiopathology
  • Device Approval
  • Equipment Design
  • Equipment Safety
  • Humans
  • Neuronal Plasticity / physiology
  • Recovery of Function / physiology
  • Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation / instrumentation*
  • Treatment Outcome