Transcranial direct current stimulation linked to improved object naming post-stroke
1. In this randomized trial of patients with aphasia, use of anodal transcranial direct current stimulation (A-tDCS) demonstrated improved object naming compared to sham procedure.
2. Further study in the use of A-tDCS for aphasia recovery post-stroke may be warranted.
Study Rundown: Aphasia remains a significant source of morbidity following stroke. Behavioral aphasia treatment has proven benefit in improving speech but major deficits still remain. The use of anodal transcranial direct current stimulation (A-tDCS) has been suggested to increase cortical activity. The current study is a double-blinded, sham controlled randomized trial that evaluated the use of A-tDCS with a futility design. The use of A-tDCS in patient undergoing speech therapy for stroke-related aphasia demonstrated increased performance in assessment of object naming.
The main take-away from the results of this study is that further investigation into use of A-tDCS for aphasia is not futile. The main strength of the study is its rigorous, blinded, and shame-controlled design. The main limitations include the small sample size that could not confirm superiority of A-tDCS, and the end point reflecting performance on testing scores but not data on quality of life or real-world functional status.
In-Depth [randomized controlled trial]: This study is a sham-controlled, randomized trial powered as a futility trial. Participants were those with single-event ischemia stroke in the left hemisphere, more than 6 months post-stroke, between the ages of 25 and 80, right-handed, no contra-indications to MRI, have a diagnosis of aphasia (by Western Aphasia Battery- Revised criteria), and achieved 65% accuracy on screening aphasia treatment testing. A-tDCS and sham procedure were combined with standard outpatient speech therapy. Primary outcome was change in object naming accuracy.
For the 74 patients included in the trial the increase from baseline naming was greater for the A-tDCS (13.9 (2.4) words, 95%CI, 9.0-18.7), than the sham procedure (8.2 (2.2) words (95%CI, 3.8-12.6). This increase represented a 70% relative increase for the A-tDCS group compared to the sham group.
©2018 2 Minute Medicine, Inc. All rights reserved. No works may be reproduced without expressed written consent from 2 Minute Medicine, Inc. Inquire about licensing here. No article should be construed as medical advice and is not intended as such by the authors or by 2 Minute Medicine, Inc.
Next Article in Stroke
Neurology Advisor Articles
- Erenumab Superior to Placebo for Reducing Migraine Disability, Improving HRQoL
- Congress Passes Bill to Fight Opioid Crisis
- Managing Status Epilepticus in Palliative Care: Accounting for Patient and Family Experience
- Physical Activity Decreases Vascular Comorbidities in Multiple Sclerosis
- Review of Factors Impacting Sport-Related Concussion Headaches
- Anodal tDCS Offers Possible Benefit for Improving Item Recall in Post-Stroke Aphasia
- Hospitalization Tied to Brain Abnormalities in Older Adults
- Spending Often Persists in High-Cost Medicare-Medicaid Eligible
- Skills-Based Intervention Did Not Cut Systolic BP After Stroke, TIA
- High Frequency of Headaches Following Dialysis Associated With BUN and Blood Pressure