Ongoing tDCS Research in Washington, DC Area

Discussion in 'Alternative Treatments and Research' started by linearb, Jun 25, 2015.

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    1. linearb
      Psychedelic

      linearb Member Hall of Fame

      Location:
      East Coast USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      1998
      I'm going to participate in a research study next month out of Georgetown University that will use transcranial direct current stimulation to attempt to modify the tinnitus signal.

      I am aware that other research along these lines has been done, mostly with mixed-to-not-very-inspiring results. However, this study is not a rehash of protocols which have been explored in previous studies, but an entirely new idea (in terms of what parts of the brain are being targeted).

      This is exploratory and is not intended as an attempt at treatment; however, I would obviously find it inspiring if it results in any relief whatsoever.

      I will undergo three fMRIs as part of this: an initial baseline, and then one more after both a sham DCS session and the experimental DCS session. I will be blind to which session is which; I do not know if the experiment is double-blinded, or not.

      I had some mild hesitation about this many MRIs for noise reasons, given that I'll need to wear a headset. However, I have been assured that the headset setup is in-ear, with the earbuds providing roughly the same dB reduction as foam earplugs, and then I will be wearing noise-blocking earmuffs on top of those. I have also been assured that if the volume does not seem tolerable to me once I am in the MRI, I can abort at any time and walk away.

      I'm hopeful, though not necessarily optimistic, that this research may lead interesting places... and of course, should it actually diminish my tinnitus even on a temporary basis, then this would provide me with a useful starting point for attempting further tDCS treatment.

      If anyone else is in the DC area and wants to see about participating, PM me and I can put you in contact with the MD PHD who is doing the research. Exclusion criteria include: hyperacusis, any current use of anti-convulsant or anti-depressant drugs, history of brain trauma, etc. (I did not ask, but I suspect that the exclusion of hyperacusis patients may have more to do with their ability to tolerate several MRIs, than anything else). Note that the MRIs will not involve contrast, so as long as solid hearing protection is used, there should be very little risk from that. As to risk from the tDCS itself, obviously this is experimental, but from doing a bit of research on tDCS it seems to me that likely adverse effects, are of a limited duration. (And, likewise, if there is any benefit, it is also likely to be on the order of hours-to-days-if-you're-lucky).

      My two sessions will both be done by the end of July, and I will provide an update here with whatever transpires.
       
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    2. Nucleo

      Nucleo Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      02/2011
      No hyperacusis why? Because of extensive MRI testing or something else?

      Anyways looks interesting. I hope you find it enjoyable! These types of study look fun to me.
       
    3. linearb
      Psychedelic

      linearb Member Hall of Fame

      Location:
      East Coast USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      1998
      That's my guess; I didn't ask specifically.

      It'll be a blast if it puts a dent in the noise :D
       
    4. Danny Boy
      Cheerful

      Danny Boy Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      England
      Tinnitus Since:
      7/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear infection
      Shame it's not in the UK, I'd sign up.
       
    5. jimH
      No Mood

      jimH Member Benefactor

      Tinnitus Since:
      30 years+
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Acoustic trauma
      I hope it does!....(y)
       
    6. linearb
      Psychedelic

      linearb Member Hall of Fame

      Location:
      East Coast USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      1998
      I've got session #1 this afternoon, and session #2 in two weeks. I'll post a followup towards the end of the month.



      ....SCIENCE
       
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    7. marqualler
      Nerdy

      marqualler Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Minneapolis, MN
      Tinnitus Since:
      10/2014
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ear infection / Mild Noise Induced Hearing Loss
      Best wishes to you @linearb! I am also a candidate for a study that is (eventually) using Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation--not yet a clinical study so more of an "exploratory" phase. The study materials are fairly optimistic-sounding that they will do "something" to tinnitus, though it's not expected that any positive effect lasts much longer than the treatment itself. The idea being that it could be made into a usable device down the road.

      Let us know how your SCIENCE goes today...
      Thomas Dolby- She Blinded Me With Science
       
    8. linearb
      Psychedelic

      linearb Member Hall of Fame

      Location:
      East Coast USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      1998
      Well, I did both sessions, and I can't say it's made any difference in my T.

      Hopefully something useful is learned from the effort, though...
       
      • Like Like x 1
    9. nills
      Barefooter

      nills Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Belgium
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/2009
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      acoustic trauma
      I will try a series of 8 sessions next months ... just as advice from brain clinic /.. I do`nt know, just keeping myself busy until I stumble upon something ... its 300 dollars for all so not too bad.
       
    10. linearb
      Psychedelic

      linearb Member Hall of Fame

      Location:
      East Coast USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      1998
      That's not bad at all. I looked into rTMS, but it was going to be $4000 for the series of 10 sessions; I need more clinical data, $4000 buys a lot of motorcycle.
       
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    11. erik
      Breezy

      erik Manager Staff Benefactor

      Location:
      Washington State, USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/15/2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Most likely hearing loss
      Thanks @linearb for the update and for the future updates--I am very interested in the results of what you find out....I would think no hyperacusis because even though it accompanies T in many cases, it is quite different and people with both T and H at the same time seem to be much worse off than T alone emotionally and possible physically.

      How would you classify your T?
       
    12. linearb
      Psychedelic

      linearb Member Hall of Fame

      Location:
      East Coast USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      1998
      ~14 khz oscillating tones throughout the head, variable pitch and intensity, seems more left-side dominant overall. Very constant "fridge noise" in right ear that never moves and seems related to TMJ problems on that side. The right sided stuff is somewhat lower frequency and lower volume in general, though sometimes it seems deafening, especially if I sleep badly on my jaw.

      Interestingly, the oscillating tones and the right-side sound seem very different and maybe not even related. Two trials at one point overloading my serotonin system with MDMA, more or less completely silenced the oscillating noises, and had zero impact whatsoever on the right sided sound.

      So, I don't need a cure, I need two cures at least ;)
       
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