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Med Acupunct. 2017 Aug 1;29(4):215-219. doi: 10.1089/acu.2017.1220.

An Overview of the Use of Neurofeedback Biofeedback for the Treatment of Symptoms of Traumatic Brain Injury in Military and Civilian Populations.

Abstract

Background: Neurofeedback, a type of biofeedback, is an operant conditioning treatment that has been studied for use in the treatment of traumatic brain injury (TBI) in both civilian and military populations. In this approach, users are able to see or hear representations of data related to their own physiologic responses to triggers, such as stress or distraction, in real time and, with practice, learn to alter these responses in order to reduce symptoms and/or improve performance. Objective: This article provides a brief overview of the use of biofeedback, focusing on neurofeedback, for symptoms related to TBI, with applications for both civilian and military populations, and describes a pilot study that is currently underway looking at the effects of a commercial neurofeedback device on patients with mild-to-moderate TBIs. Conclusions: Although more research, including blinded randomized controlled studies, is needed on the use of neurofeedback for TBI, the literature suggests that this approach shows promise for treating some symptoms of TBI with this modality. With further advances in technology, including at-home use of neurofeedback devices, preliminary data suggests that TBI survivors may benefit from improved motivation for treatment and some reduction of symptoms related to attention, mood, and mindfulness, with the addition of neurofeedback to treatment.

KEYWORDS:

EEG; TBI; biofeedback; mindfulness; neurofeedback; traumatic brain injury

Conflict of interest statement

The author acknowledges the donation of 20 “Muse: The Brain Sensing Headband” neurofeedback devices from InteraXon for the pilot study.

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