Date of Award

Spring 2020

Document Type

Honors Thesis


Social Work

First Advisor

Debra Norris

Second Advisor

Brian Burrell

Third Advisor

Lisa McFadden


Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation, Pain, Opioid Use, Holistic Approach

Subject Categories

Anesthesia and Analgesia | Social Work


The purpose of this thesis is to bring attention to alternatives to using analgesics or painkillers and potentially addictive opioid analgesics. Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation (TMS) has been proven successful in treating medication-resistant depression. This literature review will look at the links between pain and depression and examine adaptations to TMS coils in hopes of being able to stimulate the regions of the brain that interpret pain. By looking at current advancements in TMS, we can work towards adapting TMS to stimulate deeper regions. The final section of this thesis will examine how making these alternatives more popular will impact pain management. The hope is that by bringing these non-surgical, non-medication alternatives to pain management into mainstream medical use rather than alternative medicine, we can work towards holistic care and move highly addictive opioid analgesics only available to those in critical care.



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