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Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS)

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Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS)

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) is a non-invasive and painless technique, using a powerful magnetic field, similar to that used in an MRI scanner. This is used to stimulate a small region of the brain. For example, if we stimulate the brain region controlling movement, it will cause a measurable muscle twitch.

We are using this approach to study brain excitability in people with epilepsy, looking for clues that might help us understand the condition better. We are also using it to study how the brain responds to treatments, including anti-epileptic drugs and the ketogenic diet.  

Research paper: Long-interval intracortical inhibition as biomarker for epilepsy

Technique looks inside the brain to understand epilepsy

Dr Simona Balestrini, the Muir Maxwell Trust Research Fellow at Epilepsy Society and Honorary Clinical Associate Professor at UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology, has embarked on a three year project using a pioneering technique to look at the activity of the brain in people with epilepsy. Here she explains what she hopes to achieve in her work with Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) used in conjunction with electroencephalography (EEG).


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