Treatment Studies

The Therapeutic Brain Stimulation team is currently researching new treatments and conducting investigative studies for depression, bipolar, OCD, autism, schizophrenia, head injury and chronic pain. 

To read about our current research in these areas and to find out how to get involved, please see below. You can also view our Investigative Studies


Treatment Studies 

1. Accelerated TMS for depression

Aim: To see whether we can speed up the response to TMS. TMS response is usually slow, with a typical treatment course taking between four and six weeks. Over this time, patients are required to attend the hospital or clinic on a daily basis for a treatment that takes approximately 45 minutes. In this study we are investigating whether we can use a higher dose of treatment to get an accelerated treatment response, such that patient's symptoms improve in a much shorter period of time.

Participants: People with treatment-resistant depression  i.e. depression that has not adequately improved with antidepressant medications.

Project status: This project is currently underway.  

Contact details


Phone: 9805 4151


2. DBS for treatment-resistant depression

Aim: To evaluate deep brain stimulation (DBS) in depression that has proved extremely resistant to standard treatments.

Methods: This study involves neurosurgical implantation of a neurostimulator in consenting patients who have severe depression that has proved extremely resistant to all less invasive antidepressant treatment options. 

Participants: As DBS is considered a treatment of last resort, only individuals who have trialled all less invasive antidepressant treatments and remained severely depressed can be considered for the procedure. This means having trialled multiple medications from all antidepressant drug classes, combinations of antidepressant medications, cognitive behavioural therapy, transcranial magnetic stimulation and extensive electroconvulsive therapy (ECT).

Project status: This project is currently in progress.

Contact details:


Phone: 9805 4151


3. TBS for the treatment of fibromyalgia

Aim: The purpose of this project is to investigate the use of a form of therapeutic brain stimulation called Theta Burst Stimulation (TBS), as a treatment for the symptoms of fibromyalgia.

Participants: To be involved, participants must be aged between 18 and 75 years and have a diagnosis of fibromyalgia. Participation will involve attending MAPrc for 16 sessions over a four week period. Each treatment takes approximately 30 minutes. 

Project status: Recruitment underway.

Contact details

Ms. Freya Stockman


Phone: (03) 9881 4498

For further information:



4. Non-invasive brain stimulation in autism spectrum disorder (ASD)

Aim: We are currently conducting a number of studies that investigate whether transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) or transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) can be used to improve social and behavioural aspects of autism spectrum disorder.

Participants: Depending on the study, we are recruiting people aged between 14 and 40 who have a formal diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder.

Project status: Currently underway

Contact Details

A/Prof. Peter Enticott


Phone: (03) 9244 5504


5. Alzheimer’s Study

Aim: To investiage whether Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) can improve the cognitive symptoms of Alzheimer's disease. TMS is a painless, safe, and non-invasive means of stimulating nerve cells in the brain.

Participant's: Volunteers between 50 and 95 years of age with a diagnosis of mild to moderate Alzheimer's. Participation will involve attending the Alfred for a 2 week or 4 week period of daily (Monday-Friday) treatments followed by a  few follow up appointments (1-2hrs) up to 6 months post treatment. Each treatment appointment takes approximately 30 minutes. Participants will be provided compensation toward your travel and time costs.

Project Status: Currently underway

Contact Details

Ms Veronika Simic

Phone: 03 9805 4151

For more information:

- Download this flyer


Alzheimers_flyer ECIMH 18SEP19.pdf513.19 KB

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