Electromagnetic / Brain Neurostimulation / Electrotherapy (TMS, tDCS, tACS, CES)

I found this article on Electrical Brain Stimulation and how it's being used for Fibro pain, and it sounds hopeful, if you can find a physical therapist or pain control Dr. who has such a machine. It gives me a bit of hope anyway.Click here:

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This is very interesting. I hope they get good results.

TMS, Transcranial magnetic stimulation (= brain magnetic stimulation)) and transcranial direct current stimulation (tDCS), plus

Cranial electrotherapy stimulation (CES), e.g. “Alpha-Stim” below

Transcranial magnetic stimulation - Wikipedia (2009: US$350/ session)


EU 2020 Evidence-based guidelines on the therapeutic use of repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation (rTMS): An update (2014-2018) - PubMed
“The current recommendations are based on the differences reached in therapeutic efficacy of real vs. sham rTMS protocols, replicated in a sufficient number of independent studies. This does not mean that the benefit produced by rTMS inevitably reaches a level of clinical relevance.”

Spain 2020 review of 14 studies Effects of transcranial direct current stimulation and transcranial magnetic stimulation in patients with fibromyalgia. A systematic review - PubMed
“The application of tDCS to the motor cortex is the only intervention shown to decrease pain in the short and medium-term in patients with FM. The application of both interventions showed improvements in pressure pain threshold, catastrophizing and quality of life when applied to the motor cortex, and in fatigue when applied to the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex. The effects of these interventions on anxiety and depression are unclear.”

Finnland, 2017, meta-analysis Effectiveness of repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation in patients with fibromyalgia: a meta-analysis - PubMed
“There is moderate evidence that rTMS is not more effective than sham in reducing the severity of pain in fibromyalgia patients, questioning the routine recommendation of this method for fibromyalgia treatment.”

South Korea, 2020, narrative review Effect of Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation on Pain Management: A Systematic Narrative Review - PubMed
"Overall, our findings suggested that rTMS is beneficial for treating neuropathic pain of various origins, such as central pain, pain from peripheral nerve disorders, fibromyalgia, and migraine.

Brazil, 2016, review & meta-analysis Repetitive Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation for Fibromyalgia: Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis - PubMed
“In comparison with sham stimulation, rTMS demonstrated superior effect on the QoL of patients with FM 1 month after starting therapy. However, further studies are needed to determine optimal treatment protocols and to elucidate the mechanisms involved with this effect, which does not seem to be mediated by changes in depression, but that may involve pain modulation. Level of evidence 1b.”

Taiwan 2019, pilot study Analgesic effects of repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation on modified 2010 criteria-diagnosed fibromyalgia: Pilot study - PubMed
"Left prefrontal rTMS has an analgesic effect in … fibromyalgia and MDD patients. "

USA 2018, systematic review, rTMS, tDCMS Efficacy of transcranial direct current stimulation and repetitive transcranial magnetic stimulation for treating fibromyalgia syndrome: a systematic review - PubMed
“Studies involving excitatory rTMS/tDCS at M1 showed analogous pain reductions as well as considerably fewer side effects compared to FDA approved FMS pharmaceuticals. The most commonly reported side effects were mild, including transient headaches and scalp discomforts at the stimulation site. Yearly use of rTMS/tDCS regimens appears costly ($11,740 to 14,507/year); however, analyses to apapropriately weigh these costs against clinical and quality of life benefits for patients with FMS are lacking. Consequently, rTMS/tDCS should be considered when treating patients with FMS, particularly those who are unable to find adequate symptom relief with other therapies. Further work into optimal stimulation parameters and standardized outcome measures is needed to clarify associated efficacy and effectiveness.”

Cranial electrotherapy stimulation (CES), e.g. “Alpha-Stim” (R)

Wagenseil et al. 2018: The effect of cranial electrotherapy stimulation on sleep in healthy women - PubMed No significant change of sleep in healthy young women, slightly lowers the frequency alpha-waves.
Morriss et al. 2019: Clinical effectiveness and cost minimisation model of Alpha-Stim cranial electrotherapy stimulation in treatment seeking patients with moderate to severe generalised anxiety disorder - PubMed May improve anxiety in people when psychotherapy hadn’t helped, is also cheaper.
I tried Alpha-Stim: Here is my honest review – CurrentBody user experience.

Careful with epilepsy: I personally wdnt tolerate it / don’t tolerate any electrotherapy at all with my focal seizures.

Neuro-stimulation therapy is something @Brook wanted to try, but only got one comment. Anyone else tried any of this? Seems to send signals to spine and brain upon changing position, with adjustable settings. Sounds a bit like more like direct brain stimulation, than body stimulation, and wikipedia subsumes above mentioned tES, such as TMS, tDCS & tACS.

Whilst I’ve put more details about body electrotherapy like TENS here, as that is indirectly brain stimulation too, but we seem to separate it more: TENS Unit, PEMF & other body electrotherapy - #9 by JayCS