tDCS – the bigger picture

Last year I told you about a trial where we compared the brain’s activity during pain processing in the fMRI scanner before or after the application of an electrical brain stimulation technique (transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS)). The result was that there wasn’t much change after tDCS, hence we raised doubts that tDCS had an effect on … [Read more...]

tDCS for clinical use. Let’s not throw the baby out with the bath water

In my academically formative years, a psychology text book defined psychology as a scientific discipline that aims to describe, predict and change behavior. This definition stuck. Shortly afterwards, during my training as a clinical psychologist, I was introduced to tDCS by Dr. Per Aslaksen at the University of Tromsø. The method was appealing: a … [Read more...]

What does tDCS do for pain?

We’ve heard a lot about non-invasive electrical brain stimulation recently (e.g. Body in Mind blog post tDCS – negotiating the 'rising tide' of hype), but does it really work for chronic pain? Well, some people who conducted trials in chronic pain populations claim it does [e.g. 1–5], but taking a closer look at the evidence is disappointing: the … [Read more...]

tDCS – negotiating the “rising tide” of hype.

By now most of you will have heard of transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS). It’s been all over the media in recent years and original research has been flooding through the neuroscience and clinical journals. In a nutshell it involves the non-invasive delivery of low intensity direct current applied to the brain via electrodes that are … [Read more...]

A big hole in the control? Transcranial direct current stimulation blinding on trial

You may or may not have heard of transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS), but it is non-invasive method for stimulating the brain with low intensity electrical currents. Over the last decade or so there has been plenty of basic physiology research demonstrating that tDCS directly modulates cortical excitability. Neatly, anodal stimulation … [Read more...]