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Magnetic Stimulation of the Human Nervous System

This study has been completed.
Information provided by:
National Institutes of Health Clinical Center (CC) Identifier:
First received: November 3, 1999
Last updated: March 3, 2008
Last verified: November 2005

Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) is a non-invasive technique to gather information about brain function. It is very useful when studying the areas of the brain related to motor activity (motor cortex, corticospinal tract, spinal cord and nerve roots). The procedure is conducted by transmitting a magnetic signal into the brain to stimulate an area of the body. Electrodes (small pieces of metal taped to areas of the body) are used in order to measure electrical activity. A magnetic signal is sent from a metal instrument held close to the patient's head, to an area of the brain responsible for motor activity of a certain area of the body. The electrodes pick up and record the electrical activity in the muscles.

This study will employ the use of TMS to diagnose neurological disorders that affect the motor cortex or the corticospinal tract. Normal subjects are sometimes studied to investigate normal activity of the nervous system and to train doctors in clinical neurophysiology and electrodiagnostic medicine at the National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Demyelinating Disease Healthy Lysosomal Storage Disease Motor Neuron Disease Movement Disorder

Study Type: Observational
Official Title: Stimulation of the Human Central and Peripheral Nervous System With a Magnetic Stimulator

Resource links provided by NLM:

Further study details as provided by National Institutes of Health Clinical Center (CC):

Estimated Enrollment: 450
Study Start Date: February 1998
Estimated Study Completion Date: November 2005
Detailed Description:

This protocol outlines the use of magnetic stimulation as a diagnostic tool in patients with suspected dysfunction of central motor pathways or nerve roots and as a tool to localize and characterize suspected corticospinal abnormalities in neurologic disorders and systemic disorders with neurological manifestations. The protocol is intended for clinical use.

Transcranial magnetic stimulation has been used for diagnosis of neurologic disorders since 1987. The principles of magnetic stimulation and its use for diagnosis are described in current textbooks of clinical neurophysiology as a routine procedure and should be included in the training program for fellows in clinical neurophysiology and electrodiagnostic medicine at NIH.

The magnetic stimuli are to be given as single or paired pulses at repetition rates less than 1 per second.


Ages Eligible for Study:   Child, Adult, Senior
Sexes Eligible for Study:   All
Accepts Healthy Volunteers:   Yes


Adult patients with weakness or motor dysfunction.

Children and adolescents with corticospinal tract signs.

Normal volunteers, adults.

Normal volunteers, children aged 4-17.


Pregnant women.

Subjects with implanted devices: pacemakers, medication pumps or defibrillators.

Subjects with metal in the cranium except the mouth.

Subjects with intracardiac lines.

Normal subjects with history of seizures.

  Contacts and Locations
Choosing to participate in a study is an important personal decision. Talk with your doctor and family members or friends about deciding to join a study. To learn more about this study, you or your doctor may contact the study research staff using the Contacts provided below. For general information, see Learn About Clinical Studies.

Please refer to this study by its identifier: NCT00001780

United States, Maryland
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)
Bethesda, Maryland, United States, 20892
Sponsors and Collaborators
National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS)
  More Information

Publications: Identifier: NCT00001780     History of Changes
Other Study ID Numbers: 980065
Study First Received: November 3, 1999
Last Updated: March 3, 2008

Keywords provided by National Institutes of Health Clinical Center (CC):
Motor Neuron Disease
Movement Disorders
Normal Volunteer

Additional relevant MeSH terms:
Lysosomal Storage Diseases
Movement Disorders
Motor Neuron Disease
Demyelinating Diseases
Central Nervous System Diseases
Nervous System Diseases
Neurodegenerative Diseases
Neuromuscular Diseases
Metabolism, Inborn Errors
Genetic Diseases, Inborn
Metabolic Diseases processed this record on September 19, 2017