Brain stimulation for migraine

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There has been an area of research that has interested me a long time for FM and for migraines. Brain stimulation or transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) and transcranial magnetic stimulation (TMS). I was fascinated that we can stimulate certain areas and get a response, but… permanent, no, still as a treatment, maybe.

Well for migraines, this study suggests not. It is a meta-analysis of eight studies, so looking at those studies and reviewing the results. And finding no significant difference between active and sham treatment in controlling migraine pain  (standardized mean difference 20.61, P=0.11), reducing migraine frequency (SMD 20.44, P=0.22), or decreasing the need for pain medication (SMD 20.57, P=0.08) reported online in Headache.

However, they did a sub-analysis of just tDCS and said it could be promising for a non-pharmacological alternative to pain control. “In migraineurs, tDCS was moderately to highly effective in reducing pain intensity (SMD 20.91, P=0.04), decreasing attack frequency (SMD 20.75; P=0.004), and reducing the need for pain medication (SMD 20.64, P=0.03), the researchers said.” Medpage Today

The studies for brain stimulation for migraine pain control often have small sample sizes, definitely, and and high or unlcear risk of bias suggested by Monte-Silva in an interview.Medpage Today “I believe that larger double-blind, multi-site clinical trials with methodological rigor can increase the power of results and demonstrate that NIBS is a promising non-pharmacological treatment for migraine,” she told MedPage Today.

NIBS should also be considered as an adjunct therapy to improve or accelerate the efficacy of medication or other non-pharmacologic treatments, she said.

“Understanding the individual intrinsic factors that cause large variability in NIBS response may help to better define the NIBS protocols and increase its effectiveness in controlling migraine pain,” she added.

While the analysis demonstrated that NIBS for control of migraine pain is safe and well-tolerated, more research is also needed to better understand adverse effects associated with NIBS, the researchers said.

Adverse affects over time is something that needs to be looked at in all areas of this research, because they simply do not know.

People do say it is painless, non-invasive, easy and non-invasive.

Anyway the meta-analysis on non-invasive brain stimulation only demonstrated any use to Transcranial Direct Current Simulations.

 

 

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