Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation for the treatment of refractory epilepsy

Sofie Carrette*, Paul Boon, Catherine Dekeyser, Debby C. W. Klooster, Evelien Carrette, Alfred Meurs, Robrecht Raedt, Chris Baeken, Christian Vanhove, Albert P. Aldenkamp, Kristl Vonck

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

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Introduction: Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS) is an established non-invasive neurostimulation technique that is able to induce neuromodulatory effects outlasting the duration of the stimulation train. The cortical excitability disturbance in epilepsy provides a rationale for investigating the efficacy of low-frequency rTMS as a treatment for epilepsy patients. Sofar clinical trials in epilepsy patients have shown conflicting results ranging from ineffective to very effective.Areas covered: This manuscript provides an overview of the performed studies, retrieved from a PubMed search, and a critical appraisal of their results. A number of conclusions are drawn and potential optimization strategies are discussed.Expert commentary: Although the therapeutic efficacy of rTMS in refractory epilepsy has not yet been established, the non-invasiveness of the technique warrants further investigation of rTMS as a treatment for epilepsy.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1093-1110
JournalExpert Review of Neurotherapeutics
Issue number9
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2016


  • Repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS)
  • treatment
  • clinical outcome
  • epilepsy
  • status epilepticus (SE)
  • epilepsia partialis continua (EPC)

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