Last updated on October 2018

Transcranial Brain Stimulation and Its Underlying Neural Mechanisms as a Novel Treatment for Auditory Hallucinations


Brief description of study

The present study aims to investigate whether transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS) reduces auditory hallucinations in patients with psychosis. In addition, the neuronal changes of tDCS will be examined.

Detailed Study Description

The majority of patients with psychosis experience hallucinations, particularly auditory hallucinations are frequent. The hallucinations often leads to massive distress and impairments in social functioning and sometimes even order patients to commit acts of violence against themselves or others. The standard treatment for auditory hallucinations is antipsychotic medication. However, sideeffects can be severe and about 2530% of the patients do not respond to the medication. Transcranial direct current stimulation is a non-invasive brain stimulation technique, which modulates cortical excitability in a pain-free free with mild transient adverse effects, if any. Typically, cortical excitability underneath the anode is boosted while cathodal stimulation has inhibitory effects. Previous studies found that 2 daily sessions of 20 min tDCS for five subsequent days may reduce auditory hallucinations. Investigators want to further assess the efficacy of tDCS in sample that is large enough to detect medium to large effects. In addition, investigators want to investigate the neural mechanisms that underlie the tDCS treatment by examining various neuroimaging parameters before, immediately after treatment, and 3 months after treatment.

Clinical Study Identifier: NCT02769507

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Marco Hirnstein, PhD

University of Bergen
Bergen, Norway
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