Hjärnstimulering mot smärta

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En ny studie visar att genom att stimulera områden i hjärnan med ström som aktiverar alfa vågor vi får när vi mediterar kan man minska kronisk smärta, ” ..people with chronic pain experience abnormal neural oscillations, or brain waves. There are several kinds of brain waves related to different brain regions and various kinds of brain activities — processing visual stimuli, memorization, creative thinking, etc. When we speak, think, eat, play sports, watch television, daydream, or sleep, our brain activity creates electrical patterns researchers can measure using electroencephalograms, or EEGs. These patterns fluctuate or oscillate, which is why they appear as waves that rise and fall on an EEG printout.

One type of brain activity is called alpha oscillations, which occur when we are not taking in stimuli. When we meditate in silence, daydream in the shower, or even when we’re ”in the zone” during athletic activity, alpha oscillations dominate the brain. Frohlich’s lab wanted to know if these alpha oscillations were deficient in the somatosensory cortex, located in the middle portion of the brain and likely involved in chronic pain. If so, then could Frohlich’s team enhance the alpha waves there? And if that were possible, would there be any pain relief?

Prim and colleagues recruited 20 patients with lower chronic back pain. Each of them reported back pain as ”four” or greater for at least six months on the subjective scale of one to 10. Each participant volunteered for two 40-minute sessions that took place one to three weeks apart.

..During all sessions, researchers attached an array of electrodes to the scalps of patients. During one session, researchers targeted the somatosensory cortex using tACS to enhance the naturally occurring alpha waves. During another session for all participants, researchers used a similar weak electrical current that was not targeted — this was a sham or placebo stimulation session. During all sessions, participants felt tingling on their scalp. They could not tell the difference between the sham and tACS sessions. Also, the researchers in charge of analyzing the data did not know when each participant underwent the sham or tACS sessions, making this study double-blinded. analyzed the data, which showed that Frohlich’s team could indeed successfully target and enhance alpha oscillations in the somatosensory cortex of people with chronic lower back pain. .. all of them reported a significant reduction in pain immediately following the tACS sessions, according to the subjective 0-10 pain scale. Remarkably, some participants reported feeling no pain after the tACS sessions. Participants did not report the same pain reduction after the sham stimulation sessions.

”The exciting thing is that these results occurred after just one session,” Prim said. ”We hope to conduct a larger study to discover the effects of multiple tACS sessions over a longer time period.”

”This study is a perfect example of what’s possible when scientists and clinicians collaborate,” he said. ”Ultimately, if we want to develop better treatments, cures, and prevention strategies, then these sorts of new approaches that bring researchers together are of fundamental importance…

skriver science daily. 

Detta ger hopp för icke invasiva metoder samt utveckling av egenvård via meditation.  Kanske dörför yoga och stretch har goda effekter på smärta inte bara fysiskt då cirkulation och energi flödar bättre utan öven flödet i hjärnan? Fantasktiskt vad de kan göra och vad tankar kan påverka kropp, knopp och sjöl ❤ 


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