To investigate the efficacy of using transcranial alternating current stimulation (tACS) to enhance the regaining of neurological function among post-stroke patients.
Sixty post-stroke patients were randomly assigned to receive 15 sessions of the usual rehabilitation programme with or without tACS. The NIH Stroke Scale (NIHSS) and the mean blood flow velocity (MFV) and Gosling pulsatility index (PI) captured for the middle, anterior, and posterior cerebral artery were the outcome measures.
Fifteen 30-minute sessions of tACS appear to be effective for enhancing post-stroke patients' neurological function. The haemodynamic measures taken indicated that the regaining of function among the patients was largely attributed to a lowering of the vascular autoregulatory activity together with an increase in blood flow velocity at the middle cerebral artery. Future studies should explore the underlying mechanisms mediating the positive effects brought about by tACS in post-stroke rehabilitation.
- Transcranial alternating current stimulation (tACS) Device
Intervention Desc: Patients in the tACS group received a total of 15 sessions of brain stimulation. The sessions were conducted on weekdays (from Monday to Friday) for three consecutive weeks. Each session lasted 30 minutes. The alternating current stimulations were generated by a CVFT-MG201 machine. Stimulations were delivered by two U-shaped electrodes (approximately 7 cm2) fixed on the patient's left and right mastoid regions (anode or cathode varied depending on polarity of the alternating current). The frequencies (supra-slow waves: < 1 Hz; theta to gamma), levels of intensities (0 to 3mA), and density function (follows a bell-shaped curve; mean intensity ~ 2.1mA) of the current were delivered according to the manufacturer's pre-set random protocol. ARM 1: Kind: Experimental Label: tACS group
- Allocation: Randomized
- Masking: Single Blind (Outcomes Assessor)
- Purpose: Treatment
- Endpoint: Efficacy Study
- Intervention: Parallel Assignment
|Type||Measure||Time Frame||Safety Issue|
|Primary||NIH Stroke Scale (NIHSS) score||3 weeks||No|
|Secondary||the mean blood flow velocity (MFV)||30 minutes||No|
|Secondary||Gosling pulsatility index (PI)||30 minutes||No|