Spring TMS is non-drug treatment that uses a technology called transcranial magnetic stimulation to abort migraine attacks. Research has documented few possible side effects from using the device. FDA approved Spring TMS as an acute treatment for people who have migraine with aura, but it is also being prescribed for people who have migraine without aura. Published research has only looked at it as an acute treatment, but anecdotally, some people are finding that it seems to develop a preventive effect over time.
This article contains a bit of information on how TMS works, but is primarily about how to get a device and how much it costs. See Spring TMS Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation Device for Migraine Receives FDA Approval for information on efficacy and research.
How does transcranial magnetic stimulation work?
TMS sends brief pulse of energy to the brain using a very short magnetic field. It passes through the skull and induces very mild electrical currents in the brain. These currents are thought to interrupt abnormal electrical activity caused by migraine, thus aborting the migraine.
How do you use SpringTMS? Does it hurt?
To use the TMS, you hold it to the back of your head and press a button. It makes a quick clicking sound that reminds me of a single click of an MRI. It’s over in less that a second, though your doctor will probably recommend you do more than one treatment (each one a single click) at a time. There’s a bit of kickback, but it’s a mild sensation. I find it startling more than anything, though a couple people have told me they found it uncomfortable.
How does a patient find a doctor to prescribe Spring TMS?
Spring TMS is available by prescription at a number of headache clinics around the country. To find a clinic near you where it’s available, contact the manufacturer’s customer services at customercare@eNeura.com or (408) 245-6400. Your regular doctor can prescribe the device, but they need to email or call that number to talk with a representative from eNeura first.
How does a patient learn to use the device?
Spring TMS is easy to use and has a fully automated guide to walk you through the procedure. (I’ve used it and it’s really simple.) A nurse (called a clinical education consultant) will call you when you first receive the device to explain how to use it. The nurse will be available to answer questions, help you track your migraine frequency, and talk with your doctor about your progress for the first few months you use the SpringTMS.
How much does the Spring TMS cost?
Spring TMS is rented in three-month increments. At list price, it costs $250 per month. You can select to rent it for 12 months at a time, which will average $175 per month. New patients receive a $300 discount on their first prescription, which brings the cost down to $150 a month for the first three months.
How is a prescription renewed?
If you would like to continue using Spring TMS, your doctor can submit a renewal prescription to eNeura. eNeura will then email you an invoice for the next three months. After you pay, they will send you a new SIM card to replace the original in the machine. If you do not replace the SIM card, the unit will stop working when your three months are over.
Is Spring TMS covered by insurance?
Insurance coverage varies from one company to the next and usually requires a letter of medical necessity from your doctor. The company does not bill insurance directly, but you can submit the invoice to your insurance for potential reimbursement. eNeura has specially trained staff to help with insurance reimbursement. You can contact them through customer service.
Is the unit shipped to the patient or the doctor’s office?
Your doctor will send a prescription to eNeura and eNeura will send the device directly to your home. The prescription is for three months of use.
What if a patient stops using the device?
If you decide to discontinue using the device, you will need to ship it back to eNeura in the original packaging. Contact eNeura customer service for a prepaid return shipping label. You will not be charged for return shipping.
Where did this information come from?
I did an email interview with an eNeura executive through the company’s PR company. The information is current as of June 16, 2016.
Pricing information update August 24, 2016 with new details from eNeura customer service.