At the nCenter, we use a form of neurostimulation known as “transcranial direct current stimulation” or tDCS, for depression and anxiety and for accelerated learning. However, tDCS has recently emerged as a promising tool to facilitate stroke recovery. This non-invasive brain stimulation can induce changes in the brain known as “plasticity” that, along with other therapies such as physical therapy, can lead to important gains for those who have suffered from a stroke.
A tDCS treatment involves placing electrodes on the scalp that pass a low current through the area of the brain impacted by the stroke.
In a study at Oxford University, researchers Professor Heidi Johansen-Berg and Dr. Charlotte Stagg demonstrated that a group of stroke patients that received tDCS were better able to use their hands and arms for movements such as lifting, reaching and grasping objects than those who didn’t receive tDCS. The results were validated by MRI scans which showed that those who had had tDCS had more activity in the relevant brain areas for motor skills than the control group.