How TMS Therapy Helped a Woman Recover From PTSD

By: Jayson Tripp, MD


Recently, Spectrum News 1 reported on a woman named Julie Kabat from Calabasas, CA, who shares how transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) therapy helped her recover from PTSD. Julie is a single mom and a former police officer—she was on the force for over 20 years. Julie has also competed in over 20 triathlons in the last eight years!

In 2004, Julie was sexually assaulted and experienced PTSD as a result. She tried multiple antidepressants with little success, but she finally found TMS and was able to start treatments in February 2019. She described the time right before TMS as her lowest point: she wasn’t suicidal, but she often thought that death was the only thing that would fully take away her pain.

Before starting TMS, Julie was also on four antidepressants to treat her symptoms. But after 36 sessions, Julie only takes one. TMS has completely changed her life. Julie’s psychiatrist says that TMS is a game-changer for the psychiatry field and finds the effects that it has had on patients like Julie extremely rewarding.

TMS Therapy Changes Lives

Indeed, it is rewarding to see patients who struggle to find treatment for their symptoms turn their lives completely around after receiving TMS therapy. We recently had a patient who is a veteran describe how PTSD was taking its toll on his relationships, his job, and other aspects of his life.

After TMS, however, this patient’s life completely changed. He is even planning a trip to Disneyland with his family, and he says he isn’t worried about the crowds or the fireworks that will be there.

TMS as a Treatment for PTSD

Even though BrainsWay Deep TMS therapy is FDA-approved as a treatment for major depressive disorder and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD), it can be used as an off-label treatment for conditions like PTSD.

In fact, BrainsWay Deep TMS therapy has even been approved to treat PTSD in Europe and countries in South America. Studies show that TMS is an effective treatment for PTSD and that it is generally well tolerated by patients.

What It’s Like

Julie Kabat described TMS therapy as someone ringing a doorbell in your head. Other patients have described it as a tapping sensation. However, TMS therapy is not painful. It is also completely noninvasive, and it is an outpatient procedure, which means patients can immediately return to their daily activities once their TMS therapy session has concluded.

A typical course of TMS therapy consists of five 20- to 30-min ute treatment sessions per week for six to eight weeks. After the initial course of treatment, some patients may need to come in for booster sessions. One of the most exciting things about TMS therapy is that it is reported to have cumulative effects, so the more treatments you have, the more effective they become.

If you’re interested in TMS as a treatment for PTSD or another condition, contact us at Sereni ty Mental Health Centers to learn more about your options.

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*All information subject to change. Images may contain models. Individual results are not guaranteed and may vary.