PTSD treatment case study

Treatment with TMS Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation

Read the case study of how one patient beat complex PTSD with Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation Treatment at Smart TMS.

“Soon after I started treatment at Smart TMS in Manchester, I started to feel the effects – it was as quick as three days. I felt a smile returning to my face rather than the sadness that I’d experienced for such a long time. The feeling got better and better as the weeks went by.

“For the first time in 24 years, I feel better; I’m playing my guitar and spending time with my family again. My brain feels alive, almost like it’s been sleeping since the abuse I suffered and it’s woken up.”


(Patient name changed to preserve anonymity)

Gary’s story

41-year-old Gary*, first experienced feelings of Post Traumatic Stress Disorderdepression and anxiety at the age of 17, after experiencing sexual abuse at this age.

To cope with the PTSD symptoms in his late teens, Gary smoked marijuana and later started abusing ecstasy, amphetamines, cocaine and alcohol regularly on the weekends, to the point where he would often black out.

As the years progressed, Gary managed to kick his drug and alcohol habit. But his mental health illnesses continued, and he would oscillate between feeling ‘normal’ and paranoid, with his sense of peace easily shaken by external circumstances.

During his lowest point, Gary was in the process of buying a new house and experienced severe stress which triggered his PTSD. This translated into him struggling to function at work – he would receive instructions from his manager which he’d forget the minute he walked away. In his personal life, he withdrew from family and friends, neglected his personal hygiene and states that he simply didn’t feel positive about life.

It was during this stage that his partner of 16 years made enquiries with a family contact, Dr Leigh Neal, who recommended that Gary tried Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) treatment.

Soon after, Gary started treatment at the Smart TMS clinic in Manchester and started to feel the positive effects after only three days. He says he felt a smile returning to his face in place of the sadness he’d experienced for so long, and the feeling got incrementally better. For the first time in 24 years, Gary now feels significantly better. He’s even started playing guitar and spending time outdoors again, and says his brain feels alive!

TMS expert notes

Gary suffers with a condition that is recognized by many psychiatrists as complex PTSD.

It is difficult to treat conventionally with psychological interventions and medication and many patients will remain chronically disabled by this condition for the majority of their lives.

It is well established that rTMS is effective for depression and there is also now increasing evidence that it can help patients with PTSD.  However, I was astonished to see the remarkable global recovery in Gary’s symptoms over the course of 30 sessions, such that he is now in full remission.

This will require further research to properly establish its effectiveness in complex PTSD, but following my experience treating Gary, I would now have no hesitation in recommending rTMS to any patient with complex PTSD who has exhausted all the conventional recommended forms of psychiatric and psychological treatment.

We now intend to keep Gary well with maintenance treatment once a month.

Dr Leigh Neal

Medical Director and Consultant in Psychiatry & Neuromodulation , Smart TMS

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Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation – innovative medication-free treatment