Double-Containment Coil With Enhanced Winding Mounting for Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation With Reduced Acoustic Noise.
OBJECTIVE: This work aims to reduce the acoustic noise level of transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS) coils. TMS requires high currents (several thousand amperes) to be pulsed through the coil, which generates a loud acoustic impulse whose peak sound pressure level (SPL) can exceed 130 dB(Z). This sound poses a risk to hearing and elicits unwanted neural activation of auditory brain circuits. METHODS: We propose a new double-containment coil with enhanced winding mounting (DCC), which utilizes acoustic impedance mismatch to contain and dissipate the impulsive sound within an air-tight outer casing. The coil winding is potted into a rigid block, which is mounted to the outer casing through the block´s acoustic nodes that are subject to minimum vibration during the pulse. The rest of the winding block is isolated from the casing by an air gap, and the sound is absorbed by polyester fiber panels within the casing. The casing thickness under the winding center is minimized to maximize the electric field output. RESULTS: Compared to commercial figure-of-eight TMS coils, the DCC prototype has 18-41 dB(Z) lower peak SPL at matched stimulation strength, whilst providing 28% higher maximum stimulation strength than equally focal coils. CONCLUSION: The DCC design greatly reduces the acoustic noise of TMS while increasing the achievable stimulation strength. SIGNIFICANCE: The acoustic noise reduction from our coil design is comparable to that provided by typical hearing protection devices. This coil design approach can enhance hearing safety and reduce auditory co-activations in the brain and other detrimental effects of TMS sound.
Koponen, LM; Goetz, SM; Peterchev, AV
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