QEEG-Guided Neurofeedback for Recurrent Migraine Headaches

Neurotherapy Center of Dallas, 12870 Hillcrest, Suite 201, Dallas, Texas 75230, USA.
Clinical EEG and neuroscience: official journal of the EEG and Clinical Neuroscience Society (ENCS) (Impact Factor: 2.22). 01/2011; 42(1):59-61. DOI: 10.1177/155005941104200112
Source: PubMed


Seventy-one patients with recurrent migraine headaches, aged 17-62, from one neurological practice, completed a quantitative electroencephalogram (QEEG) procedure. All QEEG results indicated an excess of high-frequency beta activity (21-30 Hz) in 1-4 cortical areas. Forty-six of the 71 patients selected neurofeedback training while the remaining 25 chose to continue on drug therapy. Neurofeedback protocols consisted of reducing 21-30 Hz activity and increasing 10 Hz activity (5 sessions for each affected site). All the patients were classified as migraine without aura. For the neurofeedback group the majority (54%) experienced complete cessation of their migraines, and many others (39%) experienced a reduction in migraine frequency of greater than 50%. Four percent experienced a decrease in headache frequency of < 50%. Only one patient did not experience a reduction in headache frequency. The control group of subjects who chose to continue drug therapy as opposed to neurofeedback experienced no change in headache frequency (68%), a reduction of less than 50% (20%), or a reduction greater than 50% (8%). QEEG-guided neurofeedback appears to be dramatically effective in abolishing or significantly reducing headache frequency in patients with recurrent migraine.

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    • "In their study, patients receiving music therapy plus standard care showed greater improvement in depression symptoms than those receiving standard care only. Neurofeedback has been found to be effective in producing significant improvements in medical conditions such as depression (Kumano et al., 1996; Rosenfeld, 2000; Hammond, 2004), anxiety (Vanathy et al., 1998; Kerson et al., 2009), migraine (Walker, 2011), epilepsy (Swingle, 1998), attention deficit/hyperactivity disorder (Moriyama et al., 2012), alcoholism/substance abuse (Peniston and Kulkosky, 1990), and chronic pain (Jensen et al., 2007), among many others (Kropotov, 2009). For instance, Sterman (2000) reports that 82% of the most severe, uncontrolled epileptics demonstrated a significant reduction in seizure frequency, with an average of a 70% reduction in seizures. "
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    ABSTRACT: We introduce a new neurofeedback approach, which allows users to manipulate expressive parameters in music performances using their emotional state, and we present the results of a pilot clinical experiment applying the approach to alleviate depression in elderly people. Ten adults (9 female and 1 male, mean = 84, SD = 5.8) with normal hearing participated in the neurofeedback study consisting of 10 sessions (2 sessions per week) of 15 min each. EEG data was acquired using the Emotiv EPOC EEG device. In all sessions, subjects were asked to sit in a comfortable chair facing two loudspeakers, to close their eyes, and to avoid moving during the experiment. Participants listened to music pieces preselected according to their music preferences, and were encouraged to increase the loudness and tempo of the pieces, based on their arousal and valence levels. The neurofeedback system was tuned so that increased arousal, computed as beta to alpha activity ratio in the frontal cortex corresponded to increased loudness, and increased valence, computed as relative frontal alpha activity in the right lobe compared to the left lobe, corresponded to increased tempo. Pre and post evaluation of six participants was performed using the BDI depression test, showing an average improvement of 17.2% (1.3) in their BDI scores at the end of the study. In addition, an analysis of the collected EEG data of the participants showed a significant decrease of relative alpha activity in their left frontal lobe (p = 0.00008), which may be interpreted as an improvement of their depression condition.
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    • "Walker has reported on mild closed head injury (Walker, Norman, & Weber, 2002), anxiety associated with posttraumatic stress (Walker, 2009), migraine headaches (Walker, 2011), enuresis (Walker, 2012a), dysgraphia (Walker, 2012b), and anger control issues (Walker, 2013). His qNF protocol development centers on tailoring the protocol to the individual clinical and qEEG data, with some restrictions of either increasing or decreasing the amplitude of certain frequency ranges. "
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    ABSTRACT: While there are literature reviews and meta-analytic coverage of neurofeedback (NF) studies that focus on traditional amplitude NF and slow cortical potential NF, the same is not true for quantitative electroencephalographic (qEEG)-guided NF (qNF). To that end, this is a literature review of several qNF research articles. Generally, most are found in clinical settings, address a wide variety of symptoms and diagnoses, use clinical assessments as outcome measures, employ individualized NF protocols based on qEEG findings, and define efficacy in terms of improvement on pre-post outcome measures. However, few report pre-post qEEG metrics as outcome measures. Suggestions for future research are presented.
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    • "In recent years, NF has seen increasing acceptance as a therapeutic intervention. Current literature includes reviews and meta-analyses, which establish a recognition of NF as effective for the specific condition of ADHD (Arns,de Ridder, Strehl, Breteler, &amp; Coenen, 2009;Brandeis, 2011;Gevensleben, Rothenberger, Moll, &amp; Heinrich, 2012;Lofthouse, Arnold, Hersch, Hurt, &amp; DeBeus, 2012;Niv,&amp; Ertem, 2009Surmeli, Ertem, Eralp, &amp; Kos, 2012;Walker, 2009Walker, , 2010bWalker, , 2011Walker, , 2012). Collectively, though, all the aforementioned models are limited in their use of only one or two electrodes and they also require many sessions to achieve good clinical outcomes . "
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    ABSTRACT: Neurofeedback (NF) is gaining recognition as an evidence-based intervention grounded in learning theory, and 19-channel z-score NF (19ZNF) is a new NF model. This pilot study sought to evaluate the efficacy of 19ZNF in a clinical setting. Outcome measures framed groups such that 19ZNF was evaluated, as it relates to the neuropsychological constructs of attention (n = 10), executive function (n = 12), behavior (n = 14), and electrocortical functioning (n = 21). One-tailed t tests compared pre-post difference scores. For all pre-post comparisons, the direction of change was in the predicted direction, and differences were statistically significant (p = .000 to p = .008, effect sizes 1.29 to 3.42). Results suggest 19ZNF improved attention, executive function, behavior, and electrocortical function. This study provides beginning evidence of 19ZNF's efficacy, adds to what is known about 19ZNF, and offers an innovative approach for using quantitative electroencephalographic (QEEG) metrics as outcome measures. © 2015 SAGE Publications.
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