ArticlePDF Available

Effect of Neurofeedback on Variables of Attention in a Large Multi-Center Trial

Authors:
  • Kaiser Neuromap Institute LLC
  • The EEG Institute, a dba of EEG Info

Abstract

Background: Neurofeedback studies have been criticized for including small numbers of subjects. The effect of SMR-beta neuro-feedback training on the Test of Variables of Attention was evaluated in more than 1,000 subjects from thirty-two clinics.Methods: 1089 subjects (726 children, 324 females, 186 with ADHD or ADD diagnoses) underwent twenty or more sessions of SMR-beta neurofeedback training for attentional and behavioral complaints at thirty-two clinical settings affiliated with EEG Spectrum, Inc. Subjects were evaluated prior to training and at training completion. One hundred and fifty-seven subjects who elected extensive training (forty sessions or more) were tested after both twenty and forty training sessions.Results: Neurofeedback training produced significant improvement in attentiveness, impulse control, and response variability. Significant clinical improvement in one or more measures was seen in eighty-five percent of those subjects with moderate pre-training deficits.Conclusions: Neurofeedback training is effective in remediating atten-tional dysfunction. Nevertheless, large-scale studies with greater control (e.g., wait-list designs) are sorely needed.
... On the other hand, there is a vast amount of research regarding the possibility of improving several aspects of cognitive performance through EEG biofeedback training, also known as neurofeedback (Dessy et al. 2018;Naas et al. 2019;Norris and Currieri 1999;Vernon et al. 2003;Yamashita et al. 2017). It is reported that SMR-Beta1 (in the range of 12-18 Hz frequency bands) neurofeedback (NFB) training improves attentional processes in ADHD (Arns et al. 2015;Kaiser and Othmer 2000;Nazari et al. 2011), traumatic brain injury (Keller 2001), autistic (Holtmann et al. 2011) and healthy populations (Gruzelier 2014). Furthermore, it has been suggested that arousal levels might also be increased after SMR-Beta1 neurofeedback training (Faller et al. 2019; Communicated by Francesca Frassinetti. ...
... Over the past four decades research has indicated that NFB training of SMR-Beta1 (12-18 Hz) activity has beneficial effects on the attentional processing and arousal levels of healthy and clinical participants (Kaiser and Othmer 2000;Keller 2001). The feasibility of learned self-regulation via NFB has been reported for EEG frequency components Kamiya 1968;Vernon et al. 2003). ...
Article
Full-text available
The timing ability plays an important role in everyday activities and is influenced by several factors such as the attention and arousal levels of the individuals. The effects of these factors on time perception have been interpreted through psychological models of time, including Attentional Gate Model (AGM). On the other hand, research has indicated that neurofeedback (NFB) training improves attention and increases arousal levels in the clinical and healthy population. Regarding the link between attentional processing and arousal levels and NFB and their relation to time perception, this study is a pilot demonstration of the influence of SMR–Beta1 (12–18 Hz) NFB training on time production and reproduction performance in healthy adults. To this end, 12 (9 female and 3 males; M = 26.3, SD = 3.8) and 12 participants (7 female and 5 males; M = 26.9, SD = 3.1) were randomly assigned into the experimental (with SMR–Beta1 NFB) and control groups (without any NFB training), respectively. The experimental group underwent intensive 10 sessions (3 days a week) of the 12–18 Hz up-training. Time production and reproduction performance were assessed pre and post NFB training for all participants. Three-way mixed ANOVA was carried out on T-corrected scores of reproduction and production tasks. Correlation analysis was also performed between SMR–Beta1 and time perception. While NFB training significantly influenced time production (P < 0.01), no such effect was observed for the time reproduction task. The results of the study are finally discussed within the frameworks of AGM, dual-process and cognitive aspects of time perception. Overall, our results contribute to disentangling the underlying mechanisms of temporal performance in healthy individuals.
... 13 It was initially based on electrical activity at the surface of the brain, but has evolved to localizing the source of activity using lowresolution electromagnetic tomography (LoRETA). LoRETA neurofeedback improves attention and impulse control, 14 executive function, 15 agreeableness, feelings of confidence and composure, 16 and reduces stress. 17 It has also been used to modulate the symptoms of attention deficit hyperactive disorder, 18 post-traumatic stress disorder, 19 depression, 20 epilepsy, 21 and mild to severe traumatic brain injury. ...
... 24,25 Although previous literature indicates LoRETA neurofeedback may be beneficial for individuals with PPCS, it is unclear whether evaluating this intervention is feasible in this clinical population. For instance, recruitment in previous literature involved organizations affiliated with neurofeedback, 14 or individuals on wait lists for other treatment, 20 possibly increasing their willingness to participate. Drop-out rates in previous literature also vary from less than 1% 32 to 20%. ...
Article
Full-text available
Background Case reports indicate that low-resolution electromagnetic tomography neurofeedback and heart rate variability biofeedback may improve physiological functioning in individuals with persistent post-concussive symptoms. However, it is unclear whether larger-scale studies are feasible. Purpose To evaluate the feasibility of a combined low-resolution electromagnetic tomography neurofeedback and heart rate variability biofeedback intervention for individuals with persistent post-concussive symptoms. Methods Individuals with persistent post-concussive symptoms were randomized into intervention and control groups, and their baseline and post-test assessments were compared to a healthy control group. Outcomes included self-report questionnaires, resting electroencephalograph and electrocardiograph recordings, and a driving simulation task. Participants in the intervention group completed three 20 min low-resolution electromagnetic tomography neurofeedback sessions per week and at-home heart rate variability biofeedback training every morning and night for 8 weeks. Feasibility was evaluated according to recruitment capability and sample characteristics, data collection procedures, suitability of the intervention and study procedures, management and implementation of the study intervention, and preliminary participant responses to the intervention. Results Thirty-three individuals were recruited and 24 completed this study (seven intervention participants, nine persistent post-concussive symptoms control participants, and eight healthy control participants). One-quarter of participants (four intervention participants and three persistent post-concussive symptoms control participants) experienced simulator sickness during the driving simulator task and had to withdraw from the study. Intervention participants had an 88% and 86% compliance rate for the low-resolution electromagnetic tomography neurofeedback and heart rate variability biofeedback sessions, respectively. Low-resolution electromagnetic tomography neurofeedback sessions took approximately 1 h to complete per participant. Preliminary analysis indicated that the intervention reduced electroencephalograph z-score deviation with a very large effect size ( d = 1.36) compared to the other study groups. Conclusions Pilot studies evaluating the efficacy of low-resolution electromagnetic tomography neurofeedback and heart rate variability biofeedback should be performed to confirm these preliminary findings. However, the protocol should be modified to reduce participant fatigue and withdrawal. This trial was registered with Clinicialtrials.gov (NCT03338036; https://clinicaltrials.gov/ct2/show/NCT03338036?term=03338036&draw=2&rank=1 ).
... Al respecto, los estudios realizados por Lubar (Lubar & Shouse, 1976;Lubar & Lubar, 1984;Lubar, 1991;Lubar, Mann, Gross & Shively, 1992;Lubar, Swartwood, Swartwood & O'Donnell, 1995;Rasey, Lubar, McIntyre, Zoffuto & Abbot, 1996;Lubar & Lubar, 2001;Monastra, Lynn, Linden, Lubar, Gruzelier & LaVaque, 2005) en la universidad de Tennessee dejan en clara evidencia la alta efectividad de esta técnica en la población infantil con déficit de atención con y sin hiperactividad. Al igual que los estudios presentados por Othmer (Kaiser & Othmer, 2000;Othmer, Othmer & Marks, 1991;Scott, Kaise, Othmer & Sideroff, 2005;Legarda, McMahon, Othmer & Othmer, 2011;Othmer & Kaiser, 2000), que demuestran su alta eficacia en el tratamiento de dicho trastorno. ...
... Al respecto, los estudios realizados por Lubar (Lubar & Shouse, 1976;Lubar & Lubar, 1984;Lubar, 1991;Lubar, Mann, Gross & Shively, 1992;Lubar, Swartwood, Swartwood & O'Donnell, 1995;Rasey, Lubar, McIntyre, Zoffuto & Abbot, 1996;Lubar & Lubar, 2001;Monastra, Lynn, Linden, Lubar, Gruzelier & LaVaque, 2005) en la universidad de Tennessee dejan en clara evidencia la alta efectividad de esta técnica en la población infantil con déficit de atención con y sin hiperactividad. Al igual que los estudios presentados por Othmer (Kaiser & Othmer, 2000;Othmer, Othmer & Marks, 1991;Scott, Kaise, Othmer & Sideroff, 2005;Legarda, McMahon, Othmer & Othmer, 2011;Othmer & Kaiser, 2000), que demuestran su alta eficacia en el tratamiento de dicho trastorno. ...
Chapter
La violencia doméstica en sus múltiples manifestaciones constituye un problema de salud pública, de derechos humanos y de género, de relevancia social a nivel local, nacional y mundial. Actualmente, existe cada vez un mayor consenso sobre las consecuencias de este problema por parte de diferentes asociaciones civiles y científicas, organizaciones internacionales y gobiernos de diferentes países (Agencia de los Derechos Fundamentales de la Unión Europea [FRA] 2014; Mitchell Wight, Van Heerden & Rochat, 2016; Morrison, Ellsberg & Both, 2005; Organización Panamericana de la Salud, Organización Mundial de la Salud & Centros de control y Prevención de las Enfermedades de los Estados Unidos, 2014; World Health Organization, 2013).
... From that point, Neurofeedback began to develop rapidly and in a more or less controlled way. Many case studies, using various Neurofeedback protocols, have found a benefic effect of Neurofeedback training for children with ADHD, whether with a normalization of the QEEG, an improvement of attentional capacity and impulse control or an increase of the IQ (Heywood & Beale, 2003;Kaiser & Othmer, 2000;Thompson & Thompson, 1998). ...
Thesis
Full-text available
ADHD is a common neurodevelopmental disorder, affecting 3-5% of the children. It refers to a variable cluster of inattention, hyperactivity and impulsivity symptoms. Neurofeedback is a rising approach to manage this disorder. This technique aims to enable subjects to learn how to modulate their own brain activity. This thesis aimed at evaluating the effects of a new Neurofeedback training protocol in children with ADHD, exploiting a neurophysiological marker that has never been used in that context, the cortical P300 response. This event-related potential reflects selective and voluntary attention mechanisms and is affected in ADHD. A randomized controlled trial (RCT) has been performed, which entailed a blind comparison with an active control condition based on gaze and a non-blind comparison with a waiting group. This Neurofeedback training was provided through visual Brain-computer Interface (BCI) games. We first demonstrated that typically developing children can control this kind of BCI. This first study also allowed us to build and evaluate a Template, corresponding to the evoked responses of these children, that was later used as the neurophysiological target in the Neurofeedback training group. In a second study, we further showed that typically developing children can control, using the Template, the three BCI games designed for the RCT and that these games could indeed be used to train the P300 component. Finally, the first analysis of the clinical data shows very few significant differences between the Neurofeedback group and the two control groups. Indeed, despite some differences in favor of the Neurofeedback or both training groups, most indicators showed an improvement of the symptoms regardless of the group. These results suggest that multiple factors may contribute to those changes including nonspecific ones such as time passing, the gaze training that was required in both active groups, or the care given to all children who followed some training. The unique and rich dataset that was collected in this study will continue to teach us and guide future research. Future studies, with a larger sample size and possibly targeting specific subgroups of ADHD children, will need to be carried out in order to further investigate the specific effect of such BCI training onto dimensions such as attention or impulsivity.
... Also, TOVA provides measures of response time (RT), response time variability (RTV), omission errors (OM), commission errors (COM), the D-prime index of sensitivity to target vs. non-target stimuli, an index of symptom exaggeration, and an overall "attention performance index." It has been argued that the set of behavioural TOVA scores provides an objective measure to indicate effectiveness of NFB training in terms of specific attentional properties such as impulse control and variability of response (Kaiser and Othmer, 2000). The internal consistency of TOVA scores has been verified (see e.g., Leark et al., 2004). ...
Article
Full-text available
Neurofeedback for attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) has long been studied as an alternative to medication, promising non-invasive treatment with minimal side-effects and sustained outcome. However, debate continues over the efficacy of neurofeedback, partly because existing evidence for efficacy is mixed and often non-specific, with unclear relationships between prognostic variables, patient performance when learning to self-regulate, and treatment outcomes. We report an extensive analysis on the understudied area of neurofeedback learning. Our data comes from a randomised controlled clinical trial in adults with ADHD (registered trial ISRCTN13915109; N = 23; 13:10 female:male; age 25–57). Patients were treated with either theta-beta ratio or sensorimotor-rhythm regimes for 40 one-hour sessions. We classify 11 learners vs 12 non-learners by the significance of random slopes in a linear mixed growth-curve model. We then analyse the predictors, outcomes, and processes of learners vs non-learners, using these groups as mutual controls. Significant predictive relationships were found in anxiety disorder (GAD), dissociative experience (DES), and behavioural inhibition (BIS) scores obtained during screening. Low DES, but high GAD and BIS, predicted positive learning. Patterns of behavioural outcomes from Test Of Variables of Attention, and symptoms from adult ADHD Self-Report Scale, suggested that learning itself is not required for positive outcomes. Finally, the learning process was analysed using structural-equations modelling with continuous-time data, estimating the short-term and sustained impact of each session on learning. A key finding is that our results support the conceptualisation of neurofeedback learning as skill acquisition, and not merely operant conditioning as originally proposed in the literature.
... We believe that it cannot be concluded that NF is not effective for LD, but rather that NF applied using the Theta-to-Beta protocol might not be effective to improve impairments in sustained attention. These conclusions, however, are not in line with previous works showing contradictory findings (Kaiser & Othmer, 2000;Medici, 2018;Ochi et al., 2017;Rastegar et al., 2016;Wang & Hsieh, 2013). ...
Article
Full-text available
Children with learning disabilities (LD) can have difficulties in reading at word level, text comprehension, writing or arithmetic. Several studies have shown the efficacy of neurofeedback (NF) in improving learning skills through brainwave operant conditioning in children with LD. The aim of this work was to show the efficacy of live z-score NF training (LZT) for quantitative electroencephalogram (QEEG) normalization in school children with LD. Twenty-eight children aged 10-15 years with LD participated. Ten 30-min sessions of QEEG-guided LZT using patient’s highly preferred feedback were applied. After 10 sessions of QEEG-guided LZT, participants showed statistically significant improvements in QEEG normalization and a statistically significant small to medium improvement in the Cognitive and Emotional Checklist. The results suggest that LZT-NF produces a tendency towards normalization of brain waves in children with LD, and might be advised as a therapeutic alternative or coadjuvant along with cognitive interventions.
Article
Background Attention Deficit/ Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) is one of the most common neurodevelopmental psychiatric disorders of childhood. Treatment of ADHD includes medications and Behavioural interventions. Neurofeedback, a type of biofeedback, has been found to be useful in ADHD. It helps patients to control their brain waves consciously. However, it is not yet conclusive if it is efficacious in comparison to behavioural management training and medication. Aim To compare the efficacy of neurofeedback training, behaviour management including attention enhancement training and medication in children with ADHD. Method Ninety children between 6-12 years with ADHD were taken and randomly divided into 3 treatment groups equally- neurofeedback, behaviour management and medication (methylphenidate). Conners 3-P Short Scale was applied for baseline assessment. The respective interventions were given and follow up was done at the end of 3 months by using Conners 3-P Short scale to assess the improvement in the symptoms. There were 6 dropouts, the final sample size was 84. Results The medication group showed the greatest reduction of symptoms in inattention, hyperactivity, executive functioning domain (core symptoms of ADHD). No statistically significant difference was observed between Neurofeedback and Behaviour Management in these domains. Learning problems improved in all three groups, neurofeedback being the most effective followed by medication. Both Neurofeedback and Medication groups showed similar effect which was higher than the Behavioural Management group in Peer Relation. Conclusion Improvement in core ADHD symptoms have been observed with all 3 interventions with medication showing the greatest improvement Neurofeedback has been superior for learning problems. Thus, Neurofeedback can be an independent or combined intervention tool for children with ADHD in outpatient department of Psychiatry.
Article
Full-text available
This study examined the effects of combined neurofeedback (NF) and visual training (VT) on children with developmental dyslexia (DD). Although NF is the first noninvasive approach to support neurological disorders, the mechanisms of its effects on the brain functional connectivity are still unclear. A key question is whether the functional connectivities of the EEG frequency networks change after the combined NF–VT training of DD children (postD). NF sessions of voluntary α/θ rhythm control were applied in a low-spatial-frequency (LSF) illusion contrast discrimination, which provides feedback with visual cues to improve the brain signals and cognitive abilities in DD children. The measures of connectivity, which are defined by small-world propensity, were sensitive to the properties of the brain electrical oscillations in the quantitative EEG-NF training. In the high-contrast LSF illusion, the z-NF reduced the α/θ scores in the frontal areas, and in the right ventral temporal, occipital–temporal, and middle occipital areas in the postD (vs. the preD) because of their suppression in the local hub θ-network and the altered global characteristics of the functional θ-frequency network. In the low-contrast condition, the z-NF stimulated increases in the α/θ scores, which induced hubs in the left-side α-frequency network of the postD, and changes in the global characteristics of the functional α-frequency network. Because of the anterior, superior, and middle temporal deficits affecting the ventral and occipital–temporal pathways, the z-NF–VT compensated for the more ventral brain regions, mainly in the left hemispheres of the postD group in the low-contrast LSF illusion. Compared to pretraining, the NF–VT increased the segregation of the α, β (low-contrast), and θ networks (high-contrast), as well as the γ2-network integration (both contrasts) after the termination of the training of the children with developmental dyslexia. The remediation compensated more for the dorsal (prefrontal, premotor, occipital–parietal connectivities) dysfunction of the θ network in the developmental dyslexia in the high-contrast LSF illusion. Our findings provide neurobehavioral evidence for the exquisite brain functional plasticity and direct effect of NF–VT on cognitive disabilities in DD children.
Article
Full-text available
Introduction: Intestinal parasites diseases, in addition to causing specific physical problems, also cause cognitive impairments in children similar to children with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD). This study aimed to investigate the role of brain waves in the differentiation of children with a parasitic intestinal infection and children with ADHD. Methods: The study was a descriptive cross-sectional study. The statistical population consisted of all children referred to a Rehabilitation Center in winter and spring 2019. Convenient sampling was performed on 120 children in groups of 40 healthy children with ADHD and intestinal parasites. Research tools included a diagnostic interview, Conners Rating Scale, brainwave recording by the two-channel ProCamp biographer in the FCZ area, and parasitic test. Data were analyzed by SPSS software version 23 using logistic regression and diagnostic analysis. Results: Findings revealed that theta wave logistic coefficients were obtained in children with intestinal parasites disease and active memory and attention retention in children with ADHD. Also, healthy children and children with ADHD of 85% had the highest accuracy in predicting, and children with a parasitic intestinal infection with 52.5% had the second-highest accuracy in predicting and, based on the proposed model, were correctly classified. Conclusion: As hyperactivity has a pattern of theta surge, diseases associated with intestinal parasites can also have such symptoms. When electroencephalographic waves of a child with a parasitic intestinal disease are similar to that of a child with ADHD, the behavioral symptoms that these two disorders exhibit can overlap and, if left unchecked, can lead to errors in evaluation and diagnosis. Therefore, testing for intestinal parasites disease before starting treatment for a child diagnosed with ADHD can be helpful and vital.
Article
Ideation is a key phase in engineering design and brainstorming is an established method for ideation. A limitation of the brainstorming process is idea production tends to peak at the beginning and quickly decreases with time. In this exploratory study, we tested an innovative technique to sustain ideation by providing designers feedback about their neurocognition. We used a neuroimaging technique (fNIRS) to monitor students’ neurocognitive activations during a brainstorming task. Half received real-time feedback about their neurocognitive activation in their prefrontal cortex, a brain region associated with working memory and cognitive flexibility. Students who received the neurocognitive feedback maintained higher cortical activation and longer sustained peak activation. Students receiving the neurocognitive feedback demonstrated a higher percentage of right-hemispheric dominance, a region associated to creative processing, compared to the students without neurocognitive feedback. The increase in right-hemispheric dominance positively correlated with an increase in the number of solutions during concept generation and a higher design idea fluency. These results demonstrate the prospective use of neurocognitive feedback to sustain the cognitive activations necessary for idea generation during brainstorming. Future research should explore the effect of neurocognitive feedback with a more robust sample of designers and compare neurocognitive feedback with other types of interventions to sustain ideation.
Article
Full-text available
A study with three component parts was performed to assess the effectiveness of neurofeedback treatment for Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD). The subject pool consisted of 23 children and adolescents ranging in age from 8 to 19 years with a mean of 11.4 years who participated in a 2-to 3-month summer program of intensive neurofeedback training. Feedback was contingent on the production of 16–20 hertz (beta) activity in the absence of 4–8 hertz (theta) activity. Posttraining changes in EEG activity, T.O.V.A. performance, (ADDES) behavior ratings, and WISC-R performance were assessed. Part I indicated that subjects who successfully decreased theta activity showed significant improvement in T.O.V.A. performance; Part II revealed significant improvement in parent ratings following neurofeedback training; and Part III indicated significant increases in WISC-R scores following neurofeedback training. This study is significant in that it examines the effects of neurofeedback training on both objective and subjective measures under relatively controlled conditions. Our findings corroborate and extend previous research, indicating that neurofeedback training can be an appropriate and efficacious treatment for children with ADHD.
Article
Full-text available
A 55-year-old male subject was treated with a two-tiered neurotherapy approach for a period of six months beginning approximately one year after a left-side CVA. Medical evaluation revealed left posterior temporal/parietal infarctions secondary to occlusion of the left internal carotid artery. The patient complained of hesitant speech with word finding difficulty and paraphasia, difficulty focusing his right eye, lack of balance and coordination, poor short-term memory, poor concentration, anxiety, depression, and tinnitus. A quantitative electroencephalograph (QEEG) analysis revealed increased left-side 4-7-Hz activity and alpha persistence on eye opening. Two neurotherapy approaches were used beginning with electroencephalographic entrainment feedback (EEF). This was followed by neurofeedback to inhibit 4-7 Hz and increase 15-21 Hz over sensorimotor and speech areas. At the conclusion of treatment there were significant reductions in slow-wave activity. Improvement was evident in speech fluency, word finding, balance and coordination, attention, and concentration. Depression, anxiety, and tinnitus were greatly reduced.
Article
This paper presents Wechsler (WISC-R) profiles and changes following the application of an EEG biofeedback treatment regimen for brain-based learning disabilities. EEG biofeedback trained increases in activation (increased amplitude of 14 Hz brainwave energy) of the central and sensorimotor cortex's neural activation network resulted in increases in bihemispheric skills (complementary verbal-expressive and visual-motor abilities) Prerequisite to a successful learning posture, the acquisition of reading, and integration of higher-order learning. Enhanced/normalized academic, physical, and psychophysiological abilities were reflected in changes in brainwave energy signature and WISC-R data. Brainwave signatures and WISC-R profiles “normalised” as a result of training with significant remediation of learning disorders. There was significant growth in WISC-R Full Scale (FS), Verbal, and Performance IQ scores, reflecting improved brain function end resultant test performance, with a “normalisation” of Verbal-Performance IQ anomalies. An inverse relationship was observed between energy levels at 5 Hz and 7 Hz ad pretreatment FSIQ levels. Classic Bannatyne patterns were found to be representative of the learning disabled with pretreatment FSIQ scores within the low-average to high-average intellectual ranges.
Article
Six children were provided with long-term biofeedback and academic treatment for attention deficit disorders. Their symptoms were primarily specific learning disabilities, and, in some cases, there were varying degrees of hyperkinesis. The training consisted of two sessions per week for 10 to 27 months, with a gradual phase-out. Feedback was provided for either increasing 12-to 15-Hz SMR or 16- to 20-Hz beta activity. Inhibit circuits were employed for blocking the SMR or beta when either gross movement, excessive EMG, or theta (4–8 Hz) activity was present. Treatment also consisted of combining the biofeedback with academic training, including reading, arithmetic, and spatial tasks to improve their attention. All children increased SMR or beta and decreased slow EEG and EMG activity. Changes could be seen in their power spectra after training in terms of increased beta and decreased slow activity. All six children demonstrated considerable improvement in their schoolwork in terms of grades or achievement test scores. None of the children are currently on any medications for hyperkinetic behavior. The results indicate that EEG biofeedback training, if applied comprehensively, can be highly effective in helping to remediate children who are experiencing attention deficit disorders.
Article
Eighteen children with ADD/ADHD, some of whom were also LD, ranging in ages from 5 through 15 were randomly assigned to one of two conditions. The experimental condition consisted of 40 45-minute sessions of training in enhancing beta activity and suppressing theta activity, spaced over 6 months. The control condition, waiting list group, received no EEG biofeedback. No other psychological treatment or medication was administered to any subjects. All subjects were measured at pretreatment and at posttreatment on an IQ test and parent behavior rating scales for inattention, hyperactivity, and aggressive/defiant (oppositional) behaviors. At posttreatment the experimental group demonstrated a significant increase (mean of 9 points) on the K-Bit IQ Composite as compared to the control group (p<.05). The experimental group also significantly reduced inattentive behaviors as rated by parents (p<.05). The significant improvements in intellectual functioning and attentive behaviors might be explained as a result of the attentional enhancement affected by EEG biofeedback training. Further research utilizing improved data collection and analysis, more stringent control groups, and larger sample sizes are needed to support and replicate these findings.
Article
Previous work in cats demonstrated a discrete 12–16 Hz rhythm in sensorimotor cortex (SMR), present only during absence of movement, that could be operantly conditioned. Trained cats were resistant to drug-induced seizures. Similar biofeedback training procedures were employed with epileptic and nonepileptic human subjects, utilizing lights, tones, and slides. Initially SMR activity was detected only at low voltage by tuned filters. Biofeedback training sessions resulted in a significant increase in this activity after 2 to 3 months. Learned SMR responses in nonepileptic subjects were trains of pure or polyrhythmic 12–16 Hz activity at 20 to 25 μV over central and frontal areas. Although epileptic subjects failed to develop the enhanced SMR amplitude, they did demonstrate increased occurrence of this frequency. Training in four epileptic patients, who previously were not controlled by chemotherapy, was accompanied by a significant reduction of EEG and clinical epileptic manifestations, as indicated by sequential power spectral analysis, clinical EEG records, and seizure logs. Tonic-clonic and myoclonic seizures were most markedly reduced.
Article
Six children were provided with long-term biofeedback and academic treatment for attention deficit disorders. Their symptoms were primarily specific learning disabilities, and, in some cases, there were varying degrees of hyperkinesis. The training consisted of two sessions per week for 10 to 27 months, with a gradual phase-out. Feedback was provided for either increasing 12- to 15-Hz SMR or 16- to 20-Hz beta activity. Inhibit circuits were employed for blocking the SMR or beta when either gross movement, excessive EMG, or theta (4-8 Hz) activity was present. Treatment also consisted of combining the biofeedback with academic training, including reading, arithmetic, and spatial tasks to improve their attention. All children increased SMR or beta and decreased slow EEG and EMG activity. Changes could be seen in their power spectra after training in terms of increased beta and decreased slow activity. All six children demonstrated considerable improvement in their schoolwork in terms of grades or achievement test scores. None of the children are currently on any medications for hyperkinetic behavior. The results indicate that EEG biofeedback training, if applied comprehensively, can be highly effective in helping to remediate children who are experiencing attention deficit disorders.