Magnetic transcranial stimulation was applied to 40 patients in the early stage of a non-haemorrhagic sylvian stroke. Results were evaluated with regards to the clinical outcomes at days 7, 30 and 90. The presence or absence of an early response had a critical prognostic significance. Response latency and amplitude parameters and the excitation threshold were of little value. Facilitation in patients unresponsive at rest was another determinant parameter since 9 out of 10 such cases ultimately recovered.