Len Ochs, Ph.D.
Flexyx, LLC
106 La Casa Via, Suite 110
Walnut Creek, CA 94598
Telephone: 510.906.0422

EEG-DRIVEN STIMULATION AND MILD HEAD INJURED PATIENTS: PRELIMINARY OBSERVATIONS


Len Ochs, Ph.D.

Ten consecutively-admitted outpatient mild-to-moderate traumatic closed head injury patients, 2.5 years post accident, were given an average of six 20-minute sessions of EEG-driven photic stimulation following a flexibility-re-establishment (disentrainment) paradigm. Treatments consisted of 20-minute exposures of EEG-driven photic stimulation. The dominant EEG, between 1 and 40 Hz was extracted 128 times a second and used to reset the strobe frequency 128 times a second. The strobe frequency was then offset from the dominant frequeny either plus or minus 5 Hz. Polarity of offset was alternated each minute. Session were given daily.

After treatment, eight of the ten were self-described as having more energy during the day, better sleeping at night, much less depression, irritability, and explosiveness, better sense of humor and assertiveness, better concentration, much greater ability to get things done (without ambivalence), and increased ability to absorb written and verbal information. Their sensitivity to the intensity of the light stimulation was the best predictor of speed of recovery: others more hypersensitive took longer by a factor of more than three-to-four to reach the same results. More subtle neuropsychological skill recovery was not observed during the initial six sessions. While some patients had histories of seizures, no seizure activity was reported or observed. Some symptom exacerbation remained until management of the hypersensitivity phenomenon was adequately managed and desensitization to the photic stimulation could take place.

This treatment is non-cognitive and non-psychotherapeutic, as compared to traditional EEG biofeedback treatment methods, which involve operantly increasing the presence of higher frequency EEG activity while inhibiting lower frequency activity predominant in head injury. This method follows a flexibility-induction paradigm rather than specific-frequency enhancement and inhibition. While non-contingent stimulation rather than operant conditioning was used, EEG activity results were similar to those obtained in EEG biofeedback, except obtained in 20% the typical treatment time.

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